Team San Carlo Gresini has announced it will enter a second bike in the 2012 MotoGP World Championship under the new CRT regulations after joining forces with British constructor FTR.
The Italian outfit recently confirmed Alvaro Bautista would ride its Honda RC213V in place of the late Marco Simoncelli for 2012, but speculation has been rife as to whether it would continue with a two-bike line-up.
However, Gresini has now confirmed that it will field an additional entry, albeit utilising the new cost-cutting regulations that have already attracted a handful of new teams to the fold for 2012, with a chassis constructed by Moto2 race winners FTR.
The bike – dubbed FTR MGP12 – will be equipped with a Honda CBR1000RR engine and will begin testing for the first time soon, though a rider is yet to be announced.
“It is a source of great satisfaction that we have reached an agreement with FTR Moto to take part in the new MotoGP series, CRT,” said Fausto Gresini. “The battle between the Claiming Rule Teams will be an exciting one and we are entering it with great enthusiasm.
“Our willingness to take part was always based on the condition that we had the right technical partner and with FTR Moto and a Honda CBR 1000R engine we believe we can build a competitive bike for this new category. It is a new adventure that appeals to our racing spirit and it could prove to be the future of MotoGP. We will work our hardest and I am sure we will have great results together.”
FTR chairman Steve Bones was also thrilled to be making a foray into MotoGP competition and is excited to see how the new CRT concept develops.
“We are absolutely delighted to start up a partnership with Team San Carlo Honda Gresini and to join them on a new adventure in MotoGP. Team Gresini have shown over the years that they are technically competent, as their numerous successes prove, and we are sure that will continue alongside FTR on this new adventure.
“The growing interest in the new MotoGP-CRT category is exciting for all of us and we can't wait to get on track as soon as possible to start developing the bike and breaking new technical boundaries.”
Colin Edwards is the most high-profile rider to sign-up for CRT so far, the Texan agreeing to race a Suter-BMW for the Forward Racing team.