Gresini's Moto3 team will expand to two riders for the 2012 season, with Lorenzo Baldassarri joining fellow Italian youngster Niccolò Antonelli on FTR Honda machinery.
Baldassarri, winner of the Red Bull Rookies Cup in 2011, turned 16 on November 6. He is currently completing his secondary education and will race alongside his studies.
"This is a great day for me, a dream come true,” said Baldassarri. “I have joined a great team and for me this is the best possible opportunity I could have hoped for. I can't wait to join up with them and meet all the members of the team, who I am sure will become my second family. I am young and I have it all to learn but I have the support a very experienced crew, who have had so much success in the past.”
Team owner Fausto Gresini added: "I am delighted to be able to give another young talent like Lorenzo the opportunity to fulfil his potential in the Moto3 class. His arrival signifies another step forward in the “youth project” that I was so keen to carry forward. I am sure that next season Lorenzo and Niccolò will give us a lot to shout about.
“I am proud to be able to help with the development of fresh new Italian talent and hopefully build the foundations of a successful career for them. Lorenzo showed his potential in 2011 when he won the Rookies Cup. He's an extrovert with a lot of desire to do well and he will now get that opportunity with us. "
Antonelli finished 14th overall in his debut Moto3 season, scoring a pair of fourth places.