By Barry Russell
Ioda Racing appear to have dropped their plan, reported only yesterday by Corriere dello Sport, to run a CRT MotoGP bike using a Suter frame with a BMW engine, according to El Blog del Mundial de Motociclismo, which picked the news up from rider Danilo Petrucci's Twitter timeline.
According to Petrucci, runner-up in the 2011 FIM Superstock Cup, Ioda will develop their own chassis and match it with an Aprilia engine. “First we were to use Suter BMW [but] we chose a chassis made by us and Aprilia,” he wrote.
While confirmation from team boss Giampiero Sacchi is awaited, the move would be consistent with Ioda's bold approach, which led them to develop their own Moto3 engine under the EMIR joint venture with Robby Motor Technology.
NGM Forward Racing's Colin Edwards is the only confirmed rider to use the Suter-BMW CRT MotoGP package, while the Aspar (Randy de Puniet and Aleix Espargaro), Speed Master (Anthony West) and PBM (James Ellison) teams look set to run an Aprilia package. Gresini will use a Honda-powered FTR for Michele Pirro.
A total of nine (unnamed) CRT entries have been officially accepted by the Grand Prix Commission for the 2012 MotoGP season. These entries add to the twelve factory-built bikes, meaning MotoGP looks set for a grid of 21 riders this season.
Ioda Racing ran Simone Corsi and Mattia Pasini on FTRs in Moto2 last year. Corsi finished sixth in the standings with two podiums, while former 250cc star Pasini was 24th.