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Maxtra sign Ranseder as first rider for 2009 project

Maxtra sign Ranseder as first rider for 2009 project

The Garry Taylor-led Maxtra Grand Prix team have signed Austrian I.C. Team rider Michael Ranseder as they prepare to enter the World Championship in 2009.

Michael Ranseder has become the first rider signed up by the Chinese Maxtra Racing project, led by former Suzuki manager Garry Taylor, for the entry to the 125cc World Championship as of next season.

Ranseder, who has been a full-time Grand Prix rider since 2006 is currently recovering from a free practice crash in Australia and misses the trip to Malaysia this week – but intends to be back on-track at Valencia for the season finale and is highly enthusiastic about his move to Maxtra next year.

`I am very excited by the prospect,´ said the 22-year-old 125cc rider. `The Maxtra is an all-new and technically very interesting design, and there are some big names behind it. I feel lucky to be selected to join such a high-level project, and am committed to playing my part in it.´

Speaking from the firm´s huge Haojue factory in China, Maxtra Racing chief Simon Wei added, `We are very happy to have confirmed our first rider. This is an important step for Maxtra. The testing programme has been very encouraging, and now Michael will bring more speed and good GP experience to our fledgling team. We are very serious about this first-ever fully original Chinese racing machine, and expect Michael will be a great help as we move on to the next level.´

Meanwhile, Maxtra project leader Garry Taylor declared, `Michael is the first of two riders who will ride the Maxtra in 2009. With his experience, he will be a valuable addition to our test programme, as we take the Maxtra from a clean sheet of paper towards our goal of being fully competitive.´

`We have not yet chosen a teammate for Michael,´ continued Taylor. `Discussions are in progress with several very interesting prospects, but the second position is still open. The future of some teams is always uncertain at this time of year and so there will be some key riders who have been left waiting on a promise. We want to hear from them.´

The innovative new 125cc Maxtra prototype has a unique `upside-down´ engine designed and developed by two-stroke racing guru Jan Witteveen. The team will be based at the Harris Performance facility in the UK, though the entire project is owned and financed by Haojue, China´s leading motorcycle manufacturers, with a production output of more than three million machines in 2008.

125cc, 2008, Michael Ranseder

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