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FB Corse to join MotoGP grid

UPDATE: The FB Corse team has now issued a new statement 'clarifying' that it does not yet have a place on the 2010 MotoGP grid.

FB Corse has been given permission to join the 2010 MotoGP World Championship from round three, at Jerez.

The new team, which has signed former 500cc and WSBK winner Garry McCoy to race and develop its FB01 three-cylinder motorcycle, says it was given approval by Dorna representatives Franco Uncini and Oscar Gallardo after Wednesday's 'timing test' at Valencia.

Uncini had previously stated that he would look at the overall picture, rather than simply lap times, in order to judge if FB Corse was ready to race.

No lap times were released by FB Corse to accompany its announcement of a place on the grid, suggesting the lap times were not too impressive, but it seems that team, rider and machine did enough to convince Dorna of their worthiness - albeit by the time of the first European round, which will take place from April 30-May 2.

“I am really happy about all the compliments we have received from Dorna and Franco Uncini,” said Sergio Bertocchi, the 'B' in FB Corse. “I was not really expecting to be at that level. I am very satisfied that they allow us to enter the championship when we want and we will do the necessary development in order to enter with the best conditions.”

Wednesday was McCoy's third successive day of testing on the FB01, which has been running without electronic assistance in order to help the Australian get a feel for the bike.

McCoy was a little disappointed not to be racing from round one, but believes the decision to extend development time is a wise one.

“What we achieved today for me was remarkable because from where we started from the first day to achieve so many laps today, I really did not expect that at all,” he said. “I was really wanting to go to Qatar and Japan but I think that our decision is very wise as we have to concentrate on the development of the bike in order to improve and be competitive from [our] first race.”

FB Corse will continue testing at Valencia on Thursday.

The inclusion of FB Corse will bring the MotoGP grid up to 18 riders with another new entrant, Inmotec, due to make its debut from the Catalunya round on July 2-4.

The Ilmor X3 was the last non-factory built motorcycle to race in MotoGP, but the team - which made its debut, with McCoy, at the last two races of 2006 - withdrew after the very first round of 2007 due to a lack of speed and sponsorship. The team was never seen in MotoGP again.

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Stevo - Unregistered

March 18, 2010 7:00 AM

With so few bikes on the grid that's hardly a surprise. My dad and his Vespa were only turned down because his caravan would look out of place in the paddock.

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