JiR, which helped take Andrea Dovizioso
to fifth in the 2008 MotoGP World Championship as part of 'JiR Team Scot', will return to the racetrack at Valencia this weekend.
Although JiR and Team Scot went their separate ways at the end of last season, both had intended to remain in MotoGP, running one rider Honda teams.
However, whilst Team Scot got RCVs for Japanese Yuki Takahashi, JiR - originally set-up by Gianluca Montiron to run Makoto Tamada in MotoGP - was left without a machine supply from Honda.
JiR thus withdrew from MotoGP and set its sights on forming a new manufacturer relationship in another championship.
"Nowadays for private teams there is no chance of winning races [in MotoGP], and my target is to repeat the successes of the past, therefore I feel it is better for players such as us to quit rather than to simply make up the numbers on the grid,” Montiron had said. “We have come to the time to finally turn the page and look forward to new projects, new motivation and a new manufacturer in which we can believe."
That new project will be an FIM Superstock 1000 and Italian Championship (CIV) entry, using Aprilia machinery, under the name 'JiR Junior Team Gabrielli'. The team will run Federico Biaggi (nephew of Max) and Federico Sandi. The first round of the STK series will support WSBK at Valencia this weekend.
"JiR has decided to invest in a three-year program in a new category, this is interesting both from a commercial and a technical point of view, alongside the managerial one in that we wish to search for young, talented riders to allow them to progress from the National Championships and achieve the increased budget needed to participate in the higher levels of motorcycle racing,” said Montiron.
“The amazing new Aprilia RSV4 is our choice of machinery, as it is the newest of the road-going superbikes and for emotional reasons I was involved in the past with the first Aprilia Superbike project and the RSV Mille."
After winning two MotoGP races while team manager for Tamada at Pramac Honda, on Bridgestone tyres, Montiron formed JiR around the Japanese in 2005, whom he continued to field until the end of 2006, albeit with no further race wins.
Shinya Nakano then rode for the team in 2007, but 2008 - when JiR joined forces with Team Scot - was its most successful season, with rookie Dovizioso finishing as the top satellite rider in the world championship and taking a debut podium finish at Sepang. Dovizioso will ride for Repsol Honda this season.