Espargaró steps into Pramac position
20 August 2009 – Spain's Aleix Espargaró will be the next substitute for Mika Kallio at Pramac as MotoGP moves back to the United States next weekend. With the Finn currently riding in place of Casey Stoner at Ducati, Michel Fabrizio rode for the satellite team in the Czech Republic although the switch marks the third rider on the bike in as many races.
With Kallio having suffered a disappointing race at Brno to fall from his Ducati in an incident with Marco Melandri, Fabrizio's afternoon was also a bad one by being the first retirement from the race. Starting next weekend at Indianapolis, however, 20-year-old Espargaró will be joining Niccolò Canepa at Pramac.
The Catalan hails from the town of Granollers, which is found half an hour by car to the north-east of Barcelona and is the closest large town to the Circuit de Catalunya, home of the Catalonia Grand Prix. Aleix (pronounced as Al-AYSH) was the youngest ever rider to win the 125cc Spanish championship at the age of 15 in 2004.
"I am very happy as this season has been very hard for me," said Espargaró, who has competed in two 250cc World Championship races this season. "We are beginning a project for next year to be back in the World Championship and this will be a good occasion to get back in touch with my world.
"This season I have ridden a couple of races in the 250cc category at Assen and the Sachsenring, finishing in fourth and seventh positions - therefore I feel physical ready. It's like a dream come true to find myself in MotoGP all of a sudden! I want to thank the Pramac Racing Team which is giving me this opportunity to compete at the top level of motorcycle racing."