Esponsorama Racing will have two new riders in their garage in 2021 with Moto2™ stars Enea Bastianini and Luca Marini both now confirmed as making the step up to MotoGP™ next year with the satellite Ducati squad. The news confirms that Tito Rabat will not be on the MotoGP™ grid in 2021, bringing to an end a five-year stay in the premier class for the former Moto2™ World Champion.
Marini will continue under the SKY Racing Team VR46 colours in 2021 after the Italian outfit signed an agreement with Esponsorama Racing. It means both Marini and Bastianini will have different colour schemes in 2021, despite being Esponsorama Racing teammates. The 23-year-old becomes the third VR46 Academy rider to join the premier class and will be hoping to move up as the Moto2™ World Champion after securing five podiums, including three victories, in 2020.
"It's a dream come true" - Marini on 2021 MotoGP™ switch
Another man hoping to move up to MotoGP™ as the intermediate class World Champion is Enea Bastianini, whose much-rumoured premier class switch has finally been confirmed. The 22-year-old has been rewarded for his breakout year in Moto2™ where he currently sits second in the standings following seven podiums, including three victories of his own, in a sensational sophomore season.
The announcement confirms Ducati's rider line-up in 2021 with no fewer than three premier class rookies joining the Bologna factory's ranks next year. Jack Miller and Francesco Bagania will spearhead their efforts in the factory squad, with Johann Zarco moving from the Esponsorama Racing squad to Pramac Racing next year to join Moto2™ starlet Jorge Martin.
Luca Marini: "Competing in MotoGP is every rider’s dream. Having this great opportunity and being able to share it with the Sky Racing Team VR46, Esponsorama Racing and Ducati is even better. In these years with the team I have gained experience, I have grown and I have achieved the first important results. We are in a crucial phase of the season, we will continue to work hard to reach the maximum goal before making this big step together."
Enea Bastianini: "I am very happy to go up to MotoGP with Ducati and Esponsorama Racing. Now I have to concentrate on finishing the season as I would like to go up as World Champion, although I know it will not be easy. Next season several riders will make the leap to MotoGP, we will start a new adventure together with the fastest riders in the world in which I think that together with the team I will be able to achieve good results."
IT'S OFFICIAL! ???? @eneabastianini and @Luca_Marini_97 will make their debut in @motogp aboard the Ducati Desmosedici GP bikes of the @esponsoramagp team in 2021! #ForzaDucati pic.twitter.com/2YsDKPfPOn— Ducati Corse (@ducaticorse) November 7, 2020
Luigi Dall'Igna, Ducati Corse General Manager: "We are very pleased to have reached this agreement thanks to which two young Italian talents will be able to make their debut in MotoGP next year on our Desmosedici GP bikes entrusted to the Esponsorama Racing team. This year Raul Romero's team has shown that it has reached an excellent level of professionalism. Thanks to the renewed technical support that we will provide to the Andorra team in 2021, we are sure that it will support Enea and Luca in the best possible way in their first rookie season.
"Both Bastianini and Marini have shown to be highly competitive in Moto2 this year, and we are sure that the time has come for them to move up to MotoGP. We will provide them with all the necessary support to accompany them on their way to the top category. With this decision, Ducati intends to continue with its strategy to enhance the young talents, that has already led Pecco Bagnaia to make his debut in MotoGP with Pramac Racing in 2019 and to reach an important goal for 2021: to wear the colours of the official Ducati team."
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