The ink has barely dried on Jorge Lorenzo’s new contract with Ducati, and the MotoGP paddock is already red hot with more rumors and contracts. Who will be cut next? Will anyone get renewed? Will a new rider come up from another motorcycle racing series?
MotoGP Update: You Won’t Believe What’s Happened!
It looks like Andrea Iannone is out at Ducati. Even though he has proven to be faster on the red machine than his current teammate Andrea Dovizioso, Iannone’s results this season have been a bit scattershot. However, his slip up on the last turn in Argentina—which took both him and Dovizioso off the podium—was the last straw. Ducati announced a new two-year deal with Dovi, which means Lorenzo and Dovizioso will make up the Ducati team in 2017, but that doesn’t hang “Maniac Joe” Ianonne out to dry.
An official announcement hasn’t been made yet, but most little birdies are telling motorcycle journalists that Maverick Viñales has scored the open seat that Lorenzo left at Yamaha. This makes Ianonne the most likely candidate to fill the opening at Suzuki, but rumors that Alex Rins is going to step up to MotoGP could leave Suzuki rider Aleix Espargaro out in the cold.
To make matters even worse for any riders still looking for a factory ride, Honda just announced that they have acquired Dani Pedrosa for two more years despite rumors that he was going to take the empty seat at Yamaha. Of course, rumors of Dani’s departure from Honda have circulated every year, but they have never panned out.
If the other rumors prove true, then that means the only factory motorcycles with open seats will be at Aprilia and KTM. Sam Lowes has already acquired a seat at Aprilia, and Bradley Smith is going to ride one of the KTMs, but no one knows who will step into the remaining factory seats.
Who will be the next rider to be signed? Stick with your riding motorcycle lawyers at the Metier Law Firm to find out!