French MotoGP: 250GP replacement rules to be unveiled

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New four-stroke rules to replace the current two-stroke 250GP class for the 2011 season will be unveiled on Saturday afternoon at the French GP in Le Mans, MCN can reveal.

Widely expected to be 600cc, Dorna boss Carmelo Ezpeleta will present draft rules for the new class at a meeting of the Grand Prix Commission at 12.15pm on Saturday.

Representatives from the International Race Teams Association and the Motorcycle Sport Manufacturers Association will then consider the rules before a further Grand Prix Commission is held at the Catalunya MotoGP next month.

The new rule is almost certain to be prototype 600cc, with MCN learning that no new team will be allowed to enter in the first season of the new format. That means the likes of experienced four-stroke tuners like the Ten Kate Honda squad would be barred from racing until the second season of the new class.

The proposal has met with widespread criticism, most notably from the likes of Aprilia and KTM, but Dorna boss Ezpeleta has been insistent on implementing another big rules shake-up for MotoGP.

Following the decision to axe 500cc two-strokes for 999cc four-strokes in 2002 and the subsequent change from 990cc to 800cc last season, the latest rule change is the third major switch in seven years.

IRTA boss Mike Trimby told MCN: “The proposal will be presented by Dorna and the FIM to the Grand Prix Commission. IRTA and the MSMA will take it away and think about it and vote at the next meeting.

“Because it is a technical rule the MSMA has the right of veto, but it is only a unanimous veto. Providing there is no unanimous veto and IRTA support it then it should be fairly plain sailing.

“This weekend we will know precisely what the proposal is. We obviously know roughly what it will be but everybody will go away and think about it, although a lot of people have already spent a lot of time doing this. In Catalunya they will come back and say yes or no.”

Asked when he thought the new rules would be implemented, Trimby added: “In the programme it is 2011, however if there is a good feeling about it the object would be then to implement for 2010.”

Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt