While the likes of Remy Gardner and Darryn Binder waved goodbye to MotoGP after difficult rookie seasons, Fernandez was given an unlikely opportunity despite also struggling throughout the year. 

In what could arguably be an even better opportunity than the one he had at KTM based on Aprilia’s level of performance in 2022, Fernandez will line-up alongside four-time MotoGP race winner Miguel Oliveira, who also makes the switch to the new RNF Aprilia team from KTM. 

Set to compete on a year-old RS-GP22, a machine that should see him fight for regular points finishes, Fernandez will be expected to perform much better than his rookie season.

Speaking about the addition of Fernandez, who Rivola was keen to sign prior to him joining MotoGP, the Aprilia CEO, said: "After Raul's first Moto2 race, I visited his family. So I can say that I've wanted to sign him for a long time because I think he's a great talent. 

"I don't think he showed his talent at KTM for a number of reasons. I think our bike can suit him better because of his style."

But Rivola was also quick to warn that Fernandez must adapt: "Even if you are a super talent, you have to adapt to what you have. He didn't show that last season but I still believe he can do it. I think he will need some time. 

"If you show a season like he did in Moto2 and then follow a MotoGP season like that, you might get a bit confused: who am I, the good guy or the bad guy?

"The potential is there. How you then line up all the building blocks correctly is another story." 

Although Rivola is keen to see Fernandez’s talent lead to impressive results at Aprilia, there’s no guarantee that it will as the level in MotoGP is at an all-time high, thus making it more and more challenging for rookies to stand out.

One rider who managed to do that in 2022 was Ducati’s Marco Bezzecchi, who didn’t take Moto2 by storm as opposed to Fernandez, but managed to transition very well to the premier class.

Potentially aiding Fernandez’s development will be the riders already in the fold at Aprilia, as Aleix Espargaro, Maverick Vinales and Oliveira will all be expected to achieve significant results.

That means Fernandez won’t have the pressure of delivering right away, while he will also be able to learn from those with greater experience. 

"We have to give ourselves a bit of time without forcing it," added Rivola. "I think the other three - Aleix Espargaro, Maverick Vinales and Miguel Oliveira - will be very quick. 

"So he will have a good example by his side. He's very young, he has time. We believe in him and RNF believes in him very much."