Aprilia have confirmed that Maverick Viñales will ride the team’s bike at the Aragon GP in MotoGP. The Spaniard will race alongside fellow countryman Aleix Espargaro, who took the first podium for the Noale factory at the British GP.
With this, Viñales will replace Lorenzo Savadori for the remainder of the 2021 season, who will make some appearances as a ‘wildcard’ and will be the test rider in 2022.
The Spaniard completed two days of testing at Misano and said he was impressed with his times. He also said that he needs to adapt his riding style and that in the Aragon race he will be focused on getting more data, and that he will give the team a lot of laps to get a lot of information.
Massimo Rivola, Aprilia Racing CEO: “We are extremely proud to be able to announce our plans for the current season and for 2022 with the goal of optimizing the contributions of our three riders to the utmost. Alongside our confirmed rider, Aleix, it is our pleasure to welcome a talented athlete like Maverick to the Aprilia Racing team, who demonstrated a great feeling with the team and the bike straight away and who I am confident will be able to give his best as early as the Aragón GP. At the same time, we are also confirming Lorenzo’s role as 2022 test rider. This is a fundamental position that rewards the great efforts he has demonstrated in developing the new RS-GP, whereas he will finish out the 2021 season taking advantage of the wild cards that we’ll decide on together as soon as he is back to 100% fitness.”
Romano Albesiano, Aprilia Racing Technical Director: “The decision to have Maverick on the track from Aragón is a direct result of the tests done in Misano. It was not a given that, after a career spent up to now on a bike with an in-line engine, Maverick would have a good feeling with our V4 straight away. This is why the test on this track, historically not an easy one for our bike, was an important moment of assessment. Therefore, we are satisfied with Maverick’s immediately positive reactions, which demonstrated a good feeling both with the RS-GP and with the team and our work method. His and Aleix’s talent, combined with the experience Lorenzo has gained this season, make us optimistic about the future of our MotoGP project.”
MotoGP returns on September 12th, with the GP of Aragon, Spain.