Yamaha's satellite MotoGP team, Tech 3, intends to have a Moto2 bike up and running before the end of 2009 - and believes entry in the new 600cc championship will help independent teams retain manufacturer support in the premier-class.
Tech 3 won the 2000 250cc World Championship with Olivier Jacque before graduating to MotoGP and team principal Herve Poncharal has a 'big interest' in the new four-stroke class, which will replace 250GP from 2011 (but could debut in 2010).
“I do have a big interest in Moto2 and during the course of '09 we will work on building up a Moto2,” said Poncharal, during an exclusive interview with Crash.net
. “Hopefully, if we have time, we would like to have it on track before the end of '09 and I think all independent MotoGP teams should also think to do Moto2.”
A satellite rider hasn't won a MotoGP race since 2006 and Poncharal believes the independent teams need to be realistic about what they can achieve with the resources at their disposal.
“An independent MotoGP team today is not a big team, so the factory teams will always be the ones winning the championships,” Poncharal stated.
But whilst a world championship challenge is now virtually unthinkable, that doesn't mean the satellite teams can't have an important role to play. By using their racing expertise to create a Moto2 project, in addition to their MotoGP presence, Poncharal believes satellite teams can increase their worth to the manufacturers.
“If we have a Moto2 team, we can get some young riders from national championships, from 125cc grand prix - from anywhere - and bring them to Moto2, where we can work with them, check their potential and teach them," said the Frenchman.
“Then, if these guys are bright, we can move them up to our MotoGP team and, together with our factory, check their potential in MotoGP. If they are good enough they can then move on to the factory team. So we become a complimentary organisation to the factory, we can clearly explain what our role is and we can be more important to the factory.
“If, as an independent team, we want to play the big team fighting against Fiat Yamaha, Ducati Marlboro etc then we are wrong! Because we will never have the same means and we will never have the same budget, we will always be one level down. But we can still be happy and successful as an independent team.”
As well as being attractive to satellite MotoGP teams, Poncharal believes Moto2 is the right championship at the right time.