Kiefer Racing has cast doubts on its own future following delays and problems faced this winter during its switch to the World Supersport championship.

The 2011 Moto2 and 2015 Moto3 world champions plan to move to the World Supersport championship for 2020 after losing its grid spots in Moto2.

The German team has already signed Thomas Gradinger and Lukas Tulovic and plans to run Yamaha YZF-R6 bikes in the upcoming World Supersport championship.

But delays in confirmation to its place on the 2020 entry list for the World Supersport championship has led to difficulties in securing sufficient financial backing in time for the start of the season at Phillip Island on February 29 – March 1.

Team principal Jochen Kiefer accepts his squad is in a frustrating situation but remains optimistic of getting up to speed for the 2020 opener. The team has requested support from both championship organisers Dorna and manufacturer partner Yamaha.

“We find ourselves in an unpleasant situation. Due to the late confirmation of the requested spots for the entry list, we couldn’t launch our new project and to start with the concrete implementation earlier,” Kiefer said in a team statement. “The financing is therefore not yet secured, as it is hardly possible to find bigger sponsor agreements in the normal course of business at the end of November and in December. Most companies have already planned their advertising budgets at this time.

“Nevertheless, we had no choice but to start with the preparations. Immediately after the rider’s presentation, we ordered the race machines at Yamaha. On technical side and regarding the operational procedure we’ve made a lot of progress meanwhile. But from an economic point of view, a lot of things are still shaky.

“We want to continue to act seriously and always keep our agreements. Kiefer Racing can count on long-standing partners. With the move to WorldSSP many of them want to remain loyal to us, albeit with less support, which is understandable. Others, on the other hand, have denied their commitment from the outset, as they sometimes have commitments with other partners in Grand Prix racing, or their interest simply lies there.

“With barely two weeks to go before the first tests in Spain and Portugal, our budget is not yet secured. However, we’re not giving up hopes and we’re working tirelessly to secure the operation costs for the entire season at 100 percent. We’ve already written people in charge at Dorna and Yamaha to ask them for any start-up aid so that we can start the season as originally planned.

“We’re really sorry for Thomas and Lukas that they now have to fear for the continuation of their career at world championship level. We all have approached this project with great determination. So, it would be a terrible pity if everything collapsed so shortly before the actual kick-off.”

Kiefer Racing left the Moto2 grid at the end of 2019 following a tough campaign with rookie Tulovic on KTM machinery as the team secured just one points finish (13th at Assen) all season.

The team was rocked by the death of team boss Stefan Kiefer, brother of current team principal Jochen, in October 2017 on the eve of the Malaysian Grand Prix.

Kiefer Racing won the 2011 Moto2 world title with Stefan Bradl, before running under the title sponsor of Leopard Racing to secure the 2015 Moto3 world crown with Danny Kent.



Loading Comments...