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Moto3: McPhee nets full time ride for 2013
6 November 2012
John McPhee has signed with Racing Team Germany for the 2013 Moto3 season, where he will replace the Moto2-bound Louis Rossi.
McPhee has made wild-card grand prix appearances since 2010 and is currently seeing out the final rounds of this year's Moto3 championship, riding a KRP-Honda for Caretta Technology in place of the injured Alexis Masbou.
Racing Steps Foundation (RSF) - which has backed the 18-year-old Scot since leaving the British 125GP series in 2010 - has signed a one-year deal with Racing Team Germany.
"Naturally I'm delighted that the RSF has secured this ride for me to continue in the World Championship next year," said McPhee. "Racing Team Germany is a competitive team which has taken Rossi to his maiden Moto3 GP win and into the top half of the rider standings.
"So this is a fantastic opportunity for me for which I'm extremely grateful.
"It will be a tough year, for certain" he added. "I'm under no illusions about that. But standing in for Masbou at Caretta, along with the wildcard rides I did earlier in the season, has given me a pretty good idea of what to expect and how to handle it.
"To say I've learned an enormous amount in a short space of time with Caretta is a massive understatement. They've given me a valuable leg up and I'd like to thank them and the RSF for providing me with the chance to ride with the team.
"Hopefully I can do that by producing a strong result for them at the season finale at Valencia this weekend."
Racing Team Germany, which runs FTR Hondas, is yet to announce its second rider.
"We're pleased the RSF and John are signing to race with us in 2013," said team boss Dirk Heidolf. "It will be a strong combination, I feel.
"We've watched John for some time and been impressed with his approach and attention to detail. He's disciplined and does a very good job of dialling himself and his bike in over race weekends.
"Obviously he's been on a steep learning curve over the last few weeks and hasn't had the best of luck. This, of course, is reflected in his results. But he showed very convincingly that he has the ability to make the most of his chances when he took himself to the front in the wet at Brno.
"As a wild-card entry with only a little Ggand prix experience, that impressed me a lot.
"In 2013 our job will be to provide him with well organised teamwork and a competitive bike that will give him the confidence to produce that kind of ride in many races, not just one."
The date for McPhee's FTR Honda debut is not yet known, but he will complete his 2012 racing activities in a week's time when he returns to Valencia for the final round of Dorna's CEV Buckler series. He is currently fifth in the standings.
The race will be his final competitive ride with the RSF-backed KRP squad with which he has raced in the 125GP and Moto3 classes in the UK and Spain since 2010.
RSF founder Graham Sharp said the step up to a full season's ride in the World Championship was a natural career progression for McPhee.
"When we decided to add motorcycle racing to our remit at the end of 2009 we said our number one objective was to progress a British rider all the way through to MotoGP and this is a significant step towards that goal.
"Our first move was to forge an alliance with Mark Keen's KRP team which has done a fantastic job in developing John as a rider to the point where he can now hold his own at Grand Prix level.
"Mark and the team will continue to bring on our other riders in the CEV Moto3 series in Spain but the time is right for KRP to hand over the baton to RTG for the next chapter of John's career.
"If everything goes to plan, I'm certain John and the team will produce some respectable results together. RTG is a strong and well-respected squad which, with former 250cc GP rider Dirk Heidolf at the helm, knows how to develop young riders as well as run a Grand Prix team."
McPhee's best finish so far this year is a 15th place at Brno.
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