Herve Poncharal's Tech 3 team, which finished first and second in the 2000 250cc World Championship with Olivier Jacque and Shinya Nakano, will return to the support class next season for the first year of the new Moto2 class.
spoke to Poncharal about his Moto2 project on Wednesday, where he explained in detail why the team has chosen to use a conventional chassis - rather than a radical 'experimental' design - and gave a timeline for its development and track debut.
Poncharal also revealed that fellow Frenchman Jules Cluzel is hot favourite for one of the two seats, and names the riders - including Cal Crutchlow - on his list of potential candidates for the other.
In part two of the interview, Poncharal talks about his Monster Yamaha Tech 3 MotoGP team - including the future of riders Colin Edwards
and James Toseland
- and discusses the implications of engine leasing in the premier class...
How is the Moto2 project progressing?
Although we are fully involved with the MotoGP racing season at the moment, in-between the races the maintenance is done by Yamaha and we don't have any more tests.
So basically in-between races a lot of MotoGP teams are - I don't want to say on holiday - but they are 'off'. We are using this time, from Tuesday morning after a race until Monday prior to the next race to work on Moto2. The whole staff is 100 percent working on the Moto2 project. All of us.
How far have you got with the chassis design?
The chassis dimensions are fixed. The drawings were all done and finalised at the end of July and I think we will physically have the rolling chassis by the end of September.
So we will have the chassis with a CBR engine in it plus suspension, wheels and brakes. We have started to work on the fairing, seat, fuel tank etc. but we also have a lot of MotoGP races next month.
I think, realistically with the MotoGP racing program, it will be difficult for us to test the Moto2 before November. But I think that will be the case for everybody, except the people who are working only on Moto2 like Moriwaki.