Moto2 News - Tech 3 Bike Debuts, Former Gilera Team Still Hopeful Of Aprilia Bike

While the purists - and there are many - are still lamenting the loss of the two-stroke 250cc bikes, now reduced to scrap metal in crushers in Italy and Japan, the pace of developments in the world of Moto2 is starting to pick up.

Tuesday sees the Tech 3 team debut its long awaited Moto2 bike, which features a chassis designed and built by the team under the watchful eye of chief engineer Guy Coulon. The bike is due to hit the track for a shakedown test at the Ledenon circuit in the south of France, though some confusion over who is due to ride the bike. The original reports over on Crash.net made it clear that Tech 3 would not be flying their Japanese rider Yuki Takahashi back from Japan to ride the bike, leaving Raffaele de Rosa as a possibility. According to the French site Caradisiac.com, however, Tech 3 team boss Herve Poncharal has granted the young French rider Florian Marino the honor of being the first man to ride the bike, after promising him that reward if the former Red Bull Rookie finished on the podium this year. At Brno, Marino did even better, winning the race and claiming his prize.

"We are not going bring Raffaele de Rosa all the way from Naples just for a shakedown test," Poncharal told Caradisiac. "Florian's job will consist of making sure that everything is OK and the bike is ready to ship to the tests at Valencia scheduled for December 9th and 10th. De Rosa will ride the bike then." Pictures of the bike (shown below in an earlier stage of development) are available on the team's Flickr page.

Tech 3 Moto2 Bike

Things are not proceeding quite so smoothly for the Speed Up Aprilia team. The former Gilera 250 team which fielded 2008 World Champion Marco Simoncelli was due to run an Aprilia-framed bike in 2010, but Aprilia's sudden withdrawal has left the team in limbo. Speaking to Italian site GPOne.com, team boss Luca Boscoscuro said that he had not yet received official word from Aprilia that they would not supply the team with bikes, despite the factory's press release. Boscoscuro is still hoping that the Noale factory could yet reverse its decision and provide them with a bike to race. The Aprilia was still the team's preferred option.

"Personally, I have more faith in the work of the engineers at Noale than any other constructor," Boscoscuro told GPOne.com. "It's true that the Aprilia Moto2 bike hasn't traveled an inch on a track yet, but the enormous experience behind the project gives me hope." If need be, Boscoscuro was prepared to take on the further development of the project inside the team, following a similar track to the Aspar team. Selecting another chassis was the Speed Up Aprilia team's final option.

Aprilia' silence has caused the team serious problems. The team was due to make an official presentation in Hungary, together with riders Gabor Talmacsi and Andrea Iannone and their Hungarian sponsor, but this was called off at the last minute. What's worse, the team could lose some of their top engineers as well due to the uncertainty. Boscoscuro is hoping to receive word from Aprilia soon.

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Comments

Mmmh. Personally I have the general rule that if given the choice between crash.net and any other source - be it another MotoGP website, Tinky Winky or the janitor - I'd go with the other source. ;)

The problems which the Speed Up Team, Aspar and the others have right now show again what a poor timing it was from Aprilia and how unprofessional to only announce the whole thing so late. Way to screw up the season planning for their former loyal customers.

I like crash.net. The cage news is like a supermarket tabloid. But the bike stuff isn't half bad at all.

Aprilia's last minute quit isn't so surprising. I'll predict they'll fire Camier half way through the year if he's not winning races and try to replace him with Caneppa or DeAngelis (whichever brings the most cash).

The 250s are not banned for 2010 and they've proven to be faster at some circuits. Aprilia originally said they would provide 250s for free, but since then they have decided to start a Moto2 program and then cancel a Moto2 program.

Something is going on.

Maybe this is their way of just not spending any money this year and finding out what works and what doesn't with the teething struggles of the other moto2 constructors. In the end maybe they'll get to dominate with 4 2-stroke bikes on the grid and get a second bite at the apple to win the final "250" crown.

Black helicopter theory says IMS and Dorna have hammered out a behind the scenes deal such that 250 2-strokes now belong to IMS.

Reasonable theory says Dunlop don't want to make two completely different control tires.