The Moto2 and Moto3 markets are stepping up a gear as the 2012 season winds to a close, and the top seats in both the Moto2 and Moto3 class are starting to fill up. Today, the Tech 3 team announced that they have signed young British rider Danny Kent to a two-year contract to race for the team in Moto2. Kent has had a strong third season in Grand Prix, being a front row regular and bagging his first podium at Assen this year. The young Briton has regularly scored solid points in the ultra-competitive Moto3 class, running as wingman to current championship leader Sandro Cortese on the Red Bull KTM. Kent will line up alongside Frenchman Louis Rossi at Tech 3, though the addition of Kent makes the Tech 3 squad a very English affair, with Kent joining the team's MotoGP line up of Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith.
With both Kent and Cortese departing to Moto2, the Red Bull KTM team have seats to fill for next year. The factory-backed Finnish team today announced the signing of Spanish sensation Luis Salom, currently racing for the RW Racing GP team and 2nd in the championship to Sandro Cortese. Salom had originally penned a three-year deal with the GP Team Switzerland to do a single season in Moto3 and then make the jump to Moto2, but the team's decision to withdraw after not being given a Moto3 start put an end to that project. RW Racing GP had hoped to hold on to Salom, but the talented Spaniard has had such a strong season that it has been clear he would soon be out of the financial reach of any but the richest teams in Moto3. Salom will be one of the big favorites for the Moto3 title next season, challenging Maverick Vinales for the 2013 crown.
The Tech 3 Racing Team has completed its 2013 Moto2 World Championship line-up with the signing of promising British talent Danny Kent on a two-year contract to join Louis Rossi.
The 18-year-old has demonstrated his World Championship pedigree in 2012 by qualifying on the front row of the grid three times and claiming a stunning podium at Assen in the ultra competitive new Moto3 four-stroke class.
Kent is currently sixth in the overall Moto3 standings and he joins a long list of B ritish talent to work with the French-based Tech 3 squad in Moto2 and MotoGP, including Cal Crutchlow, James Toseland, Bradley Smith and James Ellison.
“I am delighted to be joining the Tech 3 Racing Moto2 Team for 2013 and this is a great opportunity for me to take my career to the next level. I am under no illusions how difficult racing in the Moto2 class is going to be, but I can't think of a better team to join than Tech 3 Racing to help me learn. Herve Poncharal is somebody I have a lot of respect for and the team is very professional and I had no hesitation in agreeing to sign when I knew how much they wanted me. I feel ready to make this step because my physical size is not ideal for the Moto3 class, and I can't wait to start learning and understanding the Mistral 610 machine. The bike has been close to the p odium this season, which gives me a lot of confidence in its potential. I want to finish my time in Moto3 with some strong results in the last four races before putting all my focus and energy into preparing for this new adventure with the Tech 3 Racing Team.”
Herve Poncharal – Team Manager:
“Danny is a rider I have admired for a long time and right from the moment we started considering our Moto2 plans for 2013, he was right at the top of the list of candidates. I have no doubt he is a rider with a very big future and I am really looking forward to working with Danny and helping him adapt to the very competitive Moto2 category. He has demonstrated numerous times this season his potential with some outstanding performances in the new Moto3 class, including at the last race in Aragon when he was leading and fighting for the podium for the whole race. With Danny and Louis we have shown our commitment to developing young talent and I am convinced we have put together the strongest line-up possible and 2013 will be a successful one for the Tech 3 Racing Team.”
08.10.2012 / Team Red Bull KTM
Spanish rider Luis Salom, 21, competes next year in Red Bull KTM Ajo factory team in Moto3′s world championship series.
Salom is without a doubt one of the best riders in Moto3 class. He is second in championship standing when four GPs of the season remain.
“It was clear for me already at quite early stage in the summer who is that kind of rider who is able to fight for the victories next season”, says team leader Aki Ajo, “Luis is the one. He has an experience, good pace and he has shown his maturity and rationality as a rider when it comes to the tough fights on the last laps.”
Salom has been on a podium in every last four GP’s. He has won twice and been second twice.
“Having a chance to be a part of the Red Bull KTM Ajo team is a dream come true for me”, Salom rejoices, “This is also important for my family and all the people who work with me. Competing in factory team makes me calmer and I am more confident what comes to the future. I am grateful for Aki, Red Bull and KTM for the possibility they have given me.”
Salom is anxious to start in the new team.
“I truly am ready to start fighting in my new team starting from the first tests until the last race.”
Salom was second in 2008 Red Bull Rookies Cup and had his first GP in 2009 in previous 125 cc class.
Salom, who lives in Mallorca, has so far competed in 56 GPs. He was on the podium for the first time last season in Assen, Netherlands and was in same year eight in championship standing.
Salom took his first victory 19th of August at Indianapolis circuit in USA. He won second time in previous GP held at Aragon. All in all Salom has gained ten podium places, eight from Moto3 class.
Date of birth: 7th of August 1991
Place of birth: Palma de Mallorca
Height: 170 cm
Weight: 57 kg
Race number: 39
First GP: 2009 Spain, 125 cc
First podium: 2011 Netherlands, 125 cc
First GP-victory: 2012 USA, Moto3
Podiums: 10 (2/125 cc, 8/Moto3)
GP-starts: 43/125 cc, 13/Moto3