MotoGP: KTM confirms new five-year deal with Dorna

KTM has confirmed its spot on the MotoGP grid until at least the end of the 2026 season after signing a new deal with Dorna. 

The Austrian manufacturer has signed a new five-year contract with MotoGP’s commercial rights-holders and promoters. 

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“I’m extremely happy to be able to announce this new five-year contract with Dorna,” KTM Motorsport Director Pit Beirer said. “I want to take this opportunity to thank Dorna especially and Mr Carmelo Ezpeleta and his whole team because we’ve had four great years together already and they are a really professional partner in this important sport.

“After only a few seasons we have put this project on a very solid base, so it is a positive step to continue our MotoGP involvement up to 2026.”

KTM first joined the premier class with its full factory team in 2017, having debuted the RC16 machine in the 2016 season finale at Valencia. Pol Espargaro clinched KTM’s first podium in Valencia at the end of 2018. 

Tech3 became KTM’s satellite outfit at the start of the 2019 season after ending its long-term partnership with Yamaha.

The 2020 season was the best yet for KTM thanks to extensive behind the scnes development of the RC16 from test riders Dani Pedrosa and Mika Kallio, as well as Espargaro on the track. Rookie Brad Binder secured their first-ever MotoGP win at Brno, whilst Miguel Oliveira clinched Tech3’s maiden victories at the Red Bull Ring and Portimao. 

KTM ended their 2020 campaign fourth in the constructor’s championship, whilst Espargaro, in his final season with the team, finished fifth in the rider’s championship.

“We are very satisfied with the renewal with KTM because not only they are an amazing partner, but because they also chose the platform of the FIM MotoGP World Championship as a marketing tool they consider to be ideal for their products,” Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta added. “This is not only good news for the championship but also for our sport, thanks to their involvement in all three racing categories.

“This extension tops last year’s epic season with three victories in the MotoGP class – one win by South African Brad Binder at the Czech Grand Prix and two historical wins by Miguel Oliveira, the first one in Styria and the last at his home Grand Prix in Portugal which proves their achievement in the most demanding category of motorcycling.”

KTM’s three victories in the premier class takes their GP total to 110, having taken victories in 125cc, 250cc, Moto3 and Moto2. In 2021 Binder and Oliveira, who have both risen through KTM’s development programme, will ride for the factory team. Danilo Petrucci and Iker Lecuona will race for Tech3 KTM.