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KTM quits 125cc World Championship

7 October 2009

KTM has announced that it will not field a factory team in next year's 125cc World Championship.

The Austrian manufacturer, which canned its 250cc project at the end of last season, will now concentrate its asphalt activities on the Red Bull Rookies Cup and RC8 Superbike project - within the German Superbike Championship - for 2010.

"The current situation in motorcycle racing and in the entire industry has resulted in us adapting our motor sport strategy on asphalt," the KTM Motorsport Department commented on the future activity.

"KTM has made a conscious decision concerning the topic of youth development. We will continue to maintain this by providing maximum support and training for young talent, also in difficult times.

"At the same time we must be responsible for fielding salable KTM street bikes in competition. Strengthening the racing activity around our street Superbike, the RC8 R is a logical step."

KTM - which joined 125GP in 2003 and 250GP in 2005 - has taken a total of 22 victories, 46 podiums and 19 pole positions in the two-stroke championships.

The factory won the 125cc Manufacturers' title in 2005, but never won a Riders' title - finishing runner-up with Mika Kallio in the 125cc class in both 2005 and 2006.

KTM's highest placed 250cc rider was also Kallio, who finished third overall in 2008.

KTM made a short-lived entry in the MotoGP class, as an engine supplier to Team Roberts for part of the 2005 season.

Harald Bartol will remain with KTM as technical head of its 125cc racing machines, supporting national and international activities.

KTM will also continue to support the Red Bull KTM factory team until the end of the current season.


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