While much of the focus of the 2017 MotoGP silly seasons remains on the final seat up for grabs at Marc VDS Honda, there’s also options available at Avintia Reale Ducati, with it looking like both Hector Barbera and Loris Baz’s contracts will not be renewed for next season.
The most certain name linked with the deal so far seems to be that of former Moto2 world champion Tito Rabat, with rumours circulating for months that the Spaniard, who brings personal sponsorship in the region of €1 million with him, would be joining the squad for next year.
The second rider linked to the team seems less certain, however, with both KTM test rider Mika Kallio and Moto2 rider Xavier Simeon both linked to the squad. Kallio is believed to be high on series bosses Dorna’s shopping list to return to the championship following the confirmation of a Finnish round joining the series calendar in 2019.
Simeon is a more unlikely option, considering that he currently sits 19th in the Moto2 title race and has taken only one win and four podiums in an eight-year career in the middleweight class. However, backed by wealthy support from his native Belgium, he too is believed to bring around €1 million with him to the negotiating table.
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