MotoGP: Suzuki confirm Mir as Iannone’s replacement

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Suzuki have confirmed that Joan Mir will step up to the premier class for 2019 with them, as the reigning Moto3 world champion confirmed weeks of rumours linking him to the Japanese factory on the eve of his home race in Barcelona.

Already making his mark on the Moto2 class after only six races, he 20-year-old has made no bones about wanting to make the move up to the premier class and follow in the footsteps of Maverick Viñales.

It’s also the perfect fit for Suzuki too, with team boss Davide Brivio admitting that it reflected a changing strategy away from big names and towards developing young talent for the future.

“Joan Mir is only 20 years old now, already a World Champion with an impressive ten wins last year and he has already proven several skills. He is fierce, he is witty, he is nice and he can be very fast. All the characteristics that we like to search for in a young rider, who wants to join us not only for the prestige of a factory machine in the top class but most of all because he believes in our racing project.

“Talking to him I realised how much he has a clear mind, how much he liked our Suzuki project and wanted to join us. This has been a great boost for us. Of course, we know very well that he will need time to gain experience and grow with us, but we have full confidence in his potential. Suzuki management encouraged us to pursue the ‘young rider philosophy’ and with Joan I think we found the perfect protagonist for this role. With Alex and Joan we have two very talented riders and our target is to create a strong Team for the future.”

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Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer