LCR owner delivers answer after “friendly phone call” to join KTM

Lucio Cecchinello has confirmed LCR will stay with Honda for the 2024 MotoGP season, despite interest from another manufacturer.
Lucio Cecchinello, LCR Honda COTA MotoGP 2023
Lucio Cecchinello, LCR Honda COTA MotoGP 2023

KTM had expressed interest in securing the two LCR Honda seats for 2024 in a bid to promote Pedro Acosta while keeping all four of its current MotoGP riders. 

Also linked with a switch to KTM, should they get their hands on two extra bikes, has been Marc Marquez although he too has a contract tying him to Honda until the end of 2024.

With no satellite Yamaha team, Ducati holding three who are going nowhere for the time being and Aprilia in their first season as a combined full factory and satellite project, Honda’s LCR bikes were the obvious choice for KTM to go after.

But Cecchinello, who is in the midst of a long-term relationship with Honda, has admitted that a phone call from Francesco Guidotti was not enough to persuade him.

"I want to be totally honest and transparent," Cecchinello told GPOne. "About ten days ago I received a friendly phone call from Francesco Guidotti and the KTM team manager told me, in a calm and autonomous way, that from the Silverstone GP KTM would like to begin understanding how to move forward. 

"They are interested in fielding another team in MotoGP, not just for Acosta next year. 

"He asked me what my situation was for 2024 and I replied that I had signed a three-year contract with Honda that will expire at the end of the next year. 

"The phone call ended like this and we never heard from each other again."

Honda have already seen Alex Rins and Joan Mir linked with moves away from the Japanese brand, despite being in the first of a two-year deal in their respective teams.

LCR confirmed as much in regards to Rins, who is in talks with Yamaha about lining up alongside Fabio Quartararo.

However, Cecchinello intends to honour his contract from a team point of view: "I have a contract with Honda for 2024 and it’s not my intention to break it, that’s the simple truth."

Read More