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2019 signals the beginning of a new era in the MotoGP™ paddock as the Moto2™ class welcome Triumph as their new engine supplier, while a brand new electric motorcycle racing series makes its highly anticipated debut: the FIM Enel MotoE™ World Cup.
After the MotoGP™ class got their 2019 preparations underway in Valencia this week, it’s now time for the intermediate class riders to get to grips with their new machines at the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto. With 2018 World Champion Francesco Bagania, runner-up Miguel Oliveira, race winner Fabio Quartararo and Rookie of the Year Joan Mir all moving up to the premier class, the competition for the 2019 title will be fierce.
What does Crafar think of the new Moto2™ Triumph engine?
Can familiar faces such as Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS), new teammate Xavi Vierge, three-time 2017 race winner Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo), Luca Marini (SKY Racing Team VR46), compatriot Lorenzo Baldassarri (Pons HP40) and Marcel Schrotter (Dynavolt Intact GP) mount a title challenge? Well, the Jerez Test will give us the first indications as to is looking strongest on board their new Triumph powered machines. But they face stiff competition…
Moto3™ World Champion Jorge Martin will make his Moto2™ debut with the Red Bull KTM Ajo team, lining up alongside Binder. Fellow rookie and runner-up in the 2018 Moto3™ World Champion Fabio Di Giannantonio (Speed Up Racing) gets acquainted with his Triumph machine, and so do Red Bull KTM Tech 3 teammates Marco Bezzecchi and Philipp Oettl. Italians Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team) and Nicolo Bulega (SKY Racing Team VR46) complete the exciting rookie lineup who progress through the ranks from the lightweight class.
Moto2™ teams test out the new Triumph engine in Aragon
British star Jake Dixon (Angel Nieto Team) is another to begin his adaptation to a Moto2™ bike, he’ll join fellow Brit Sam Lowes on the intermediate class grid in 2019 – the latter returning to the Federal Oil Gresini Moto2 team for this season. Others to keep a close eye on? After a year in the premier class, 11-time Moto2™ race winner Tom Luthi returns to the intermediate class with Dynavolt Intact GP, with riders like Augusto Fernandez (Pons HP40) and Remy Gardner (SAG Team) eyeing podium finishes – at least – this season. Moreover, MV Agusta make their Grand Prix return with Forward Racing Team riders Stefano Manzi and Dominique Aegerter at the realm.
So, what about the FIM Enel MotoE™ World Cup? All 18 riders of the inaugural Championship will be out on track for testing at Jerez on their Energica Ego Corsa machines. These include names like Alex De Angelis (Alma Pramac Racing), Maria Herrera (Angel Nieto Team), LCR E-Team’s Randy de Puniet, the eagerly anticipated return of Sete Gibernau (Pons Racing), Trentino Gresini MotoE’s Lorenzo Savadori, British rider Bradley Smith (One Energy Racing) and Mike Di Meglio (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) – a very strong lineup, but who will start strongest?
MotoE™: mechanics get to grips with the electric bike
Both sets of machines will be on circuit across the three days of testing; Friday 23rd, Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th November, between 09:30 and 17:30 local time (GMT +1). The Moto2™ and MotoE™ riders will alternate track time throughout each day, with motogp.com sharing box and track action and interviewing the top riders, alongside a three-minute highlight video after every day.
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