Red Bull Rookies top two clinch 125GP switch
The rivalry that blazed all the way to the final lap of the last Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup race of 2009 will be repeated in 2010 after Jakub Kornfeil and Sturla Fagerhaug signed 125GP deals.
Kornfeil, the 16-year-old Czech rider who won the Rookies Cup by just 2 points, has signed for Racing Team Germany, cementing a relationship with team owner/manager Dirk Heidolf that started back in June.
"I was racing at a German Championship race at the Sachsenring and Dirk spent a lot of time with me that weekend, helping me, giving me very good advice," said Kornfeil.
"He really knows what he is talking about and I think must be a very good team manager and will be a big help next year."
Fagerhaug, the 18-year-old Norwegian, runner up in the Rookies Cup, will race for the I.S.P.A. Ongetta, Worldwide Race Team and that too is a plan that was developing before the end of the season.
"I am really satisfied with having signed with I.S.P.A. Ongetta, Worldwide Race Team," said Fagerhaug.
"Actually I was already talking with them at the Grand Prix in Estoril where we had a meeting and they were interested, but none of us really had the economic means to make the deal possible.
"Then I found some more sponsors in Norway, and I think the team found some more sponsors too, so they made me a good offer and I went down to Lugano to sign with them."
Kornfeil knows very well that the step into the world championship will be tough. "I know that the competition will be very, very hard.
"At the moment it is impossible to say what I can do. We should know more after the pre season tests, at least then I will have ridden the bike and have a little more idea.
"I don't know if it will be possible to finish in the points every weekend, it will not be easy. I just know that I will give it my maximum effort and that I have a good background after my two years in the Rookies Cup.
"If I can finish the season in the top 15 in the world championship I will be very happy and so will my team."
Heidolf is very clear what he thinks Kornfeil is capable of, "I was happy to sign him because he is fast, young and very clever.
"This is his first year in MotoGP 125 cc and it's a learning year. We have a two-year contract. The results must be step by step better and better. In some races I think he can run in position 10 to13.
"This is the plan for the first season. We will fit in as many races as we can also outside the GPs, the German Championship race at Sachsenring for example and anything else we can do to gain experience.”
Kornfeil said: “I know that I have a lot to learn about racing.
"But I am not worried about learning new tracks, I enjoy it but actually I have been to most of the tracks, I still have to learn Qatar, Motegi and Catalunya and of course Silverstone but that one I am really looking forward to because it will be new to most of us so a lot more even for everyone.
"Of course I also like Brno and Sachsenring so I am really looking forward to those GPs as well. I think Bradley Smith is the best rider in the 125 class now and it will be great to be out on the track with him every weekend.”