Razlan Razali bows out of RNF MotoGP team

Razlan Razali is stepping down from his role as team principal of the RNF MotoGP squad.
Razlan Razali, MotoGP, British MotoGP, 6 August
Razlan Razali, MotoGP, British MotoGP, 6 August

The Malaysian, who previously ran the Sepang circuit and multi-race-winning Petronas SRT team, founded RNF after the closure of the Sepang project at the end of 2021.

RNF continued to run satellite Yamaha machinery last season, during which title sponsor WithU departed, before forming a new partnership with CryptoDATA and becoming Aprilia’s new satellite team for 2023. Lead rider Miguel Oliveira has been dogged by injuries but took a best finish of fourth place, plus three other top six finishes on the year-old RS-GPs.

After a cryptic ‘Last Dance’ Facebook post on the eve of the Valencia weekend, Razali has now confirmed rumours that he will depart:

“It has been an amazing run. A once in a lifetime opportunity to manage and own a MotoGP Team in the World Championship. We know what it’s like to win and especially in losing. Worked with the most amazing team members from all over the world. We discovered a world champion in Fabio, we were nearly world champion with Frankie, we had GOAT Vale, MotoGP legend Dovi, we took the risk in Darryn and finally the fastest dentist in the world with Miguel and a champion in waiting Raul. The team was my extended family, my 2nd home and we should be proud of what we have achieved and become. What lies ahead? It will be another beginning albeit a different one and I shall watch with the greatest encouragement and excitement. Let’s go team!”

Razali's post contained a selection of pictures, notable for the absence of any CrytoDATA branding.

The new 'RNF' owners are still be to announced but GPone.com reports that American investors are stepping in via lifestyle and entertainment company Trackhouse, which has a team in NASCAR.

Amid rumours of financial issues, the MSM agency, founded by former Williams F1 head of sponsorship Justin Mountstephens, announced it had ‘secured the global commercial rights to the RNF MotoGP Racing team’ in late September.

Oliveira and team-mate Raul Fernandez will continue at Aprilia's satellite team next season. The rider contracts, machinery and factory engineers are handled by Aprilia, but it remains to be seen which other RNF team members will stay on as part of the revised project.

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