MotoGP Aragon: Jake Dixon remains with Petronas Yamaha whilst John McPhee gets Moto2 opportunity
Following a successful debut at Silverstone Jake Dixon has been rewarded with another MotoGP opportunity at Aragon.
Dixon will once again line-up alongside Valentino Rossi at Petronas Yamaha after a solid premier class debut at the British Grand Prix. Dixon, the 2018 BSB runner-up, showcased impressive lap-times - finishing only 0.146s behind Rossi during Sunday's warm-up session, and adapted quickly to the Yamaha M1, however was left feeling frustrated after grip issues on race day.
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Perhaps more importantly, Dixon approached the weekend in the correct manner. The Brit only suffered one small crash over the course of the weekend, and took a steady, professional approach to the weekend. As a result, he's been rewarded with another opportunity to prove why he should be considered for a spot on the 2022 grid.
Meanwhile, John McPhee will be given his own opportunity to impress in the Moto2 class. The Scot will take Dixon's spot in the Petronas Sprinta Racing garage, stepping onto the Kalex machine for the first time in his career.
Like Dixon, the opportunity comes at a vital time for McPhee, who is searching for a 2022 ride in the intermediate class. With the Sepang Racing Project (SRT) coming to an end at the end of the year, McPhee knows that he'll need to find a spot elsewhere.
"It's a fantastic opportunity for me to try the Moto2 bike in Aragon, McPhee said. "As with every rider, it's their dream to progress through the categories, and I feel like I am at the level, and have the ability to make this step up to Moto2. Of course, the challenge will be extremely difficult because it's my first time ever racing a big bike, with my only real experience being 15 laps of Barcelona in 2019 which was a 'thank you' from the team after my win at Le Mans.
"I'm really excited and motivated for the challenge and really looking forward to trying the bike. There’s no real expectation, I’m just going to enjoy it a lot and feel like if I can improve session by session and keep closing the gap with the fastest riders, then this will be a job well done. Thank you to my team for this opportunity."
McPhee's spot in the Moto3 garage will be taken by Malaysian FIM CEV talent cup rider Syarifuddin Azman (Damok), who is also a Moto3 Junior World Championship rider and race winner.
"The current dynamic status of the team allows some exciting opportunities for our riders and also new talent," SRT Team Principal Razlan Razali explained. "We were satisfied with Jake’s MotoGP debut at the British Grand Prix so want to give him the opportunity to continue his learning in the MotoGP class in Aragon.
"This of course leaves a space in his seat in Moto2 which we wanted to give to John, who will make his Moto2 debut. Subsequently, this leaves a perfect platform for us to lend his seat to Syarifuddin Azman from the FIM CEV. Azman won one round in Barcelona of the FIM CEV, and I think it’s a great chance for him to gain experience to determine his level in the Moto3 World Championship. We are excited by the prospect of giving exposure to our young riders and we wish them all the best."
McPhee and Azman will ride alongside Xavi Vierge and Darryn Binder in their respective classes next weekend.