Despite a very tough season with the LCR Honda outfit, Nakagami will remain in MotoGP for a sixth consecutive season, all of which have come aboard Honda machinery.
With Ai Ogura currently fighting for the Moto2 world championship, expectation was that the former Moto3 runner-up could become a direct replacement for Nakagami, who is still without a top five finish this season.
But with Ogura recently confirming his intention to remain in the intermediate class for next season, Nakagami has instead been given somewhat of a lifeline in the premier class.
Rumours of a test rider role at Repsol Honda or a switch to WorldSBK looked the most likely options for Nakagami had he been replaced, however, the decision to retain the experienced Japanese rider means Honda now has its full 2023 line-up confirmed.
“I am very happy to be able to continue racing in MotoGP in 2023 with LCR Honda IDEMITSU,” said Nakagami.
I would like to thank IDEMITSU and Honda HRC for their continuous support. I am looking forward to the next season, and I will give it everything to achieve the best results with the team.
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“Meanwhile, for the rest of this season, I will continue to work hard to improve my performance.”
The signing of Nakagami sees him follow Marco Bezzecchi and Luca Marini, who have also been retained by the Mooney VR46 team in the last few days.
The only remaining MotoGP seat that’s available is the second GASGAS Tech3 Factory Racing KTM ride, with Pol Espargaro already confirmed as one of its riders.
Expectation is that Moto2 series leader Augusto Fernandez will be promoted.