Jake Dixon has sealed a move to the Petronas-backed Sepang team for an assault on the 2020 Moto2 championship, Crash.net has learned.

The 23-year-old will team up with the Xavi Vierge, another new signing, in the Malaysian squad’s expanded two-rider team using a Kalex chassis, which won a seventh straight Moto2 Constructors' crown at Aragon.

Sepang's current Moto2 rider, Khairul Idam Pawi, has missed most of this season due to a serious finger injury and now looks set to move to its Moto3 team for 2020, alongside John McPhee.

Dixon signed a two-year deal with the Angel Nieto Team last September. But the situation at Misano eight days ago was far from clear, with the team informing Crash.net it was a ‘one [year] plus one’ arrangement.

“[A two-year deal] doesn’t mean anything in this paddock, does it?” Dixon posited at Misano.

But he and personal manager Frankie Carchedi met with the Petronas Sprinta squad at Aragon to finalise the deal that will keep the five-time British Superbike race winner in the intermediate grand prix category for a second year.

It’s believed series organiser Dorna was keen for the Englishman – one of only two Brits younger than 24 years old across all three grand prix categories – to stay in the paddock and showcase the potential on a regular basis.

Indeed, Dixon thanked both Dorna and IRTA when interviewed on BT Sport at Aragon on Sunday and later confirmed to Crash.net that he had signed a deal with another team, but was unwilling to give anything else away:

“I’m sorted in the paddock,” he said. “2020 is good. I can’t wait, obviously. [But] I can’t say much more.”

But the deal that will see him riding the Kalex and Ohlins suspension should have Dixon aiming for regular point-scoring finishes from the very start of 2020.

The 23-year old’s debut season in the grand prix paddock has been something of a baptism of fire, with an uncompetitive KTM chassis, a scarcity of updates since last November and inexperience at 14 of the calendar’s 19 tracks all a factor.

The 2018 British Superbike runner-up has grown increasingly frustrated in recent weeks at the repeated failings of the 2019 KTM package. Aragon was another race in which he suffered from a chronic lack of rear grip.

“All weekend and at the last round my one comment was ‘I’ve got no rear grip’,” he said on Sunday. “It seems to me that we’re stagnant. We’re not moving forward.

“I’m still pushing 100 percent, don’t get me wrong. I keep saying the same thing. I sound like a broken record. I don’t like it because I want to say some positive things. We're doing what we can with what we have but the team hasn't had any upgrades and it's making it difficult.

“[Brad] Binder just won the race so they're doing something right. I know I still need to improve a little bit. I’m coming to tracks I’ve never been to before. It was always going to be difficult. I feel like I’ve got a lot more to give.”

The aim for the upcoming five races is to therefore learn the tracks in a bid to begin 2020 with a solid understanding of the layouts he’ll encounter.

“All I can do is take the information for next year and get as much data as I can,” he said. “We’ll keep working. The main thing is I’m finishing races and building towards next year.”

It is rumoured that Hafizh Syahrin is in contention to take over Dixon's seat at Angel Nieto next year.

 

Comments

Loading Comments...