The Aprilia MotoGP project for 2023 will experience the most important leap since the return of Noale ‘s house to the premier class in 2016, with the expansion to four bikes on the grid by having a satellite team, the RNF , and two new riders from very high level, Miguel Oliveira and Raúl Fernández, who will join the official factory riders, Maverick Viñales and Aleix Espargaró, who, three races from the end of the season, is still immersed, for the first time in his life, in the fight for the title.
Aprilia, after the fantastic 2022 season, will lose the privilege of concessions, the system that in recent years has helped new teams close the gap with the best, increasingly equalizing the championship.
With this new scenario, the role of the test rider becomes even more important, if possible, and that is why the Piaggio Group team has announced the renewal of its ‘test rider’, the young Italian Lorenzo Savadori.
“The Cesena rider is an integral part of the Aprilia Racing project in MotoGP and will continue with his development work on the RS-GP, which includes the entire program of official and private tests, as well as a series of wild-card races in the World Championship”, communicates Aprilia in a note.
Until now, within the framework of the concessions, the regular drivers could take part in the private tests, always subject to a tire use limit, an advantage that they will no longer enjoy in 2023.
“The role of Savadori, FIM STK 1000 Cup champion and Italian Superbike Champion, will be even more demanding next year, given the outstanding results of the current season that will lead to the elimination of the regulatory concessions for Aprilia, therefore that they will not be able to carry out private tests with the official pilots Espargaró and Viñales”, continues the note.
“I am very happy about the renewal with Aprilia, with whom I have collaborated since 2015”, explains Savadori, who claims to be “particularly satisfied with the level that the RS-GP has reached and with having also made my contribution to this growth, giving back to the brand to fight for the championship title”.
With the loss of the concessions, Aprilia will also see the number of wild cards to which it is entitled cut, which will be reduced to three per season.
“In addition to my work as a tester, I am always eager to participate in as many races as possible, hoping to be able to race a whole season as a driver again,” asks a Savadori who started 2021 as an official driver until Viñales replaced him.
All MotoGP testers, renewed
With the renewal of Savadori by Aprilia, the ‘test rider grid’ in MotoGP is practically complete. Honda offered one more year, until the end of 2023, to its current test driver and substitute, the German Stefan Bradl. The same happens with the Ducati testers, the Italian Michele Pirro, and Yamaha, Cal Cruthclow, who will continue one more course in their current role.
KTM also maintains its two test riders, the Finnish Mika Kallio, and the Spanish Dani Pedrosa, who despite not making any official announcement, renewed his contract with the Austrian house months ago to continue with the development of the RC16. In fact, Pedrosa has already tested the almost complete 2023 KTM at the Misano test and in subsequent private tests at Motorland, a motorcycle that Brad Binder has already been using since the Aragón Grand Prix, with the exception of the engine, which is sealed until end of season.
The ‘test riders’ of MotoGP
Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images
Photo de: MotoGP
Photo by: MotoGP
Foto de: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images
Photo by: GasGas Factory Racing
Foto de: KTM