This weekend's British Moto2 Grand Prix at Silverstone will mark the first time that JiR has field its full 2012 rider line-up.
Brazilian rookie Eric Granado turned 16 on June 10th and is thus old enough to join former 125cc title contender Johann Zarco on the MotoBI machines.
Despite his lack of grand prix experience, Granado has been preparing for his World Championship debut through testing and taking part in the opening rounds of the Spanish CEV Moto2 championship, where he scored a point at Aragon in the all-Michelin series.
“This race will be the debut of Eric Granado, the challenge for him racing with the other riders will not be so easy,” said team principal Gianluca Montiron. “We will let him take to the track being aware that we have made good preparation for this moment, considering that between tests and races we covered a distance that is about one half of the total distance of the whole 17 GPs that you find in a season.
“The presence of a Brazilian rider has to be considered a major event, after Alex Barros retired from the World Championship and I hope that this project could be a start-up to create a new generation of riders from the country.
“To me Brazil represents some excellent memories in the last GP ran in Rio in 2004 I stepped up onto the podium as a winner of the top class with Makoto Tamada. I hope this lets people understand the level of professionalism we have maintained across the years since then, as we are always looking for continued support to move forward with our plans for both this year and the future.”
“I have tried to prepare myself very intensively physically during these six months of preparation,” said Granado. “During the three rounds I did in the CEV and some official IRTA training, I have learned a lot and I went through situations that are sure to serve me very well in the World Championship because I know I have a team with much experience and that is helping me to evolve.
“So far I've suffered several crashes, the experience will teach me not to make those mistakes any more. During these weeks that I stayed in Europe before going to England, I prepared really well and I hope to be 100% for the race, not only physically but also mentally.”
Zarco starts his sixth Moto2 race holding ninth in the championship and with a best finish of fourth. The Frenchman was holding second in his home grand prix at Le Mans, before falling in the wet conditions.
“I enjoy the circuit of Silverstone whether it will be wet or dry! My aim – as always – is to fight with the best riders in this class, and they are Andrea Iannone, Pol Espargaro, Thomas Luthi and Marc Marquez,” said Zarco. “These are the best and I want to have them in my sights all through the weekend and fight to be in the top five.”