Sponsor talks key to LCR expansion plans

By Matthew Birt -

MotoGP

 15 July 2014 09:35

LCR Honda boss Lucio Cecchinello is expected to find out within the next few days whether his Monaco-based MotoGP squad has the budget to expand to a two-rider effort in 2015.

Cecchinello has had long ambitions to run a two-rider premier class project with Honda, having always entered with a one-rider effort ever since joining MotoGP back in 2006 with Casey Stoner.

The Italian is now in the final stages of advanced talks with London-based CWM World, which describes itself as a ‘leader in international product development priding itself on its ability to bring high quality products and services to market with unrivalled drive and passion. We cover a wide range of demographic tailoring to support institutions, corporations and individuals. CWM has 13 subsidiaries servicing specific needs across medical, investment and online trading just to name a few.

Together with CWM World’s vision and market position we build cutting-edge solutions and manage key assets worldwide.’

CWM World recently backed German Stefan Bradl during last month’s Dutch TT at Assen and will also be the naming rights backer of LCR in the forthcoming Brno and Phillip Island races too.

And Cecchinello is now hoping to secure a major sponsorship deal for 2015 to help him secure a two-bike deal with HRC.

Cecchinello told MCN during last weekend’s Sachsenring round in Germany that he continues to be locked in discussion with CWM World management and hoped to have an answer on their potential increased involvement imminently.

Cecchinello told MCN: “We are under discussion with our title sponsor of the Assen GP to make a big project for next year. At the moment the project is still under discussion. If CWM World come on board we will have a two-rider team and if not we will continue with just one.”

With all factories in MotoGP limited to running just four official bikes, if Cecchinello could finance a second machine, it would be a production Honda RCV1000R.

Moto3 sensation Jack Miller has been linked with that ride, while Cecchinello could also be looking for a rider to jump on his RC213V factory machine, with Honda not keen on him renewing Stefan Bradl’s deal.

He added: “Every manufacturer can only have four Factory spec machines and this means that we will have one Factory spec and one in Open configuration. The new Honda Open bike will be based on a Factory bike but with Magneti Marelli software. So it will have pneumatic valves and I believe it will be very competitive and very interesting to have a softer tyre on this bike. We haven’t yet discussed with riders because at this moment we didn’t sign any contract. Once that is done we can immediately start to think about available riders in the market.”

Cecchinello is confident that he could land an RCV1000R machine for 2015, even though HRC recently revealed to MCN that it won’t supply more than four.

Aspar has confirmed it will definitely continue to run two, while Fausto Gresini is also keeping the one RCV1000R that he currently campaigns with British rider Scott Redding.

The Czech-based Cardion AB squad is also believed to want to continue.
So could Cecchinello definitely get an RCV1000R if CWM World commits to a bigger involvement next season?

He added: “This is still under discussion with HRC but I think that if the sponsor will sign then Honda will seriously consider our extra request. I think what will be important is to give the information to Honda very soon because this will be the key point to make an extra Open machine.”