KTM insists engine freeze won't slow its progress

KTM insists that the MotoGP engine freeze introduced to control costs in the wake of the global coronavirus pandemic will not affect its progress.

KTM insists engine freeze won't slow its progress

The Austrian marque became the first to resume testing this week since the COVID-19 crisis placed the 2020 campaign on hold, as it undertook two days of running at the Red Bull Ring with Pol Espargaro and Dani Pedrosa on Wednesday and Thursday.

Amid the disruption, MotoGP teams agreed to freeze engine and aerodynamic development until 2021, although concession manufacturers KTM and Aprilia were granted an exemption to be able to work on their engines for longer before the season is planned to begin in July.

In three seasons of riding for KTM, Espargaro has risen from 17th in the points standings in 2017 to 14th in 2018 - scoring the squad's first podium at Valencia - and then to 11th last year.

While the halting of engine development might be expected to delay KTM's progress, the outfit's sporting director Pit Beirer says he doesn't expect the rule to change its situation.

"I don't think the engine freeze will affect our progress," Beirer told Motorsport.com. "We had been preparing very well with a view to Qatar and I think we will be able to compete at the level we would have reached in Doha, which was satisfactory.

"We are getting closer to the fastest. At this point we can't cut as much time or as fast as we did at the beginning, when we were far away from them. The others, like us, are also working hard. If development is frozen, it's frozen for them too."

Beirer stated previously that, despite being able to modify its engine until June 29 along with Aprilia, KTM will not further modify its engine before the season.

The German underlined his support for the measures that MotoGP has taken to try and protect the championship from the economic fallout of the COVID-19 crisis, which also included a financial aid package aimed at the independent teams.

"I think it's very good that for the moment we've decided to leave our weapons on the table and try to save MotoGP together," Beirer said.

"It's time to think about everyone's business instead of focusing on oneself. We are all rivals, but we all feed off the same thing."

shares
comments
Why Miller's Ducati move represents change of guard in MotoGP

Previous article

Why Miller's Ducati move represents change of guard in MotoGP

Next article

MotoGP announces Japanese GP cancellation

MotoGP announces Japanese GP cancellation
Load comments
Why Suzuki desperately needs to find Brivio's MotoGP replacement Prime

Why Suzuki desperately needs to find Brivio's MotoGP replacement

OPINION: While Shinichi Sahara insists that Suzuki does not need a team manager following the departure of Davide Brivio, the team's performance in the early part of the 2021 MotoGP season and the sentiment of the staff suggests the opposite

MotoGP
Aug 3, 2021
How KTM has ended up with an embarrassment of MotoGP riches Prime

How KTM has ended up with an embarrassment of MotoGP riches

Forming a ladder all the way from Red Bull Rookies Cup to MotoGP, KTM has created a steady stream of top talents in grand prix racing delivering the Austrian marque with the success expected of the brand. Here's how it has gone about it.

MotoGP
Jul 28, 2021
Why MotoGP will miss its gentle giant Prime

Why MotoGP will miss its gentle giant

Danilo Petrucci’s days in MotoGP appear numbered, as KTM looks to completely reshuffle the Tech3 team for 2022. Though the Italian's 2021 season so far hasn’t been standout, the giant Italian covertly became a top runner in MotoGP across the last decade and brought with him a personality that world sport sorely needs more of

MotoGP
Jul 22, 2021
Why Mir's MotoGP title defence can't be written off yet Prime

Why Mir's MotoGP title defence can't be written off yet

Joan Mir’s defence of his MotoGP title has had an underwhelming start as Suzuki didn’t progress its championship-winning GSX-RR as much as its rivals did with their bikes over the winter. Speaking to Motorsport.com, Mir lays out why his title defence has been stalled so far and why he’s confident title number two is still within reach

MotoGP
Jul 12, 2021
How Quartararo became the MotoGP leader Yamaha needed Prime

How Quartararo became the MotoGP leader Yamaha needed

It's been six years since Jorge Lorenzo gave Yamaha its last MotoGP title in 2015. Since his departure at the end of 2016, Yamaha's form has been inconsistent but it has at last found a new talisman to return it to the top spot in the form of a precociously talented Frenchman who currently leads the standings.

MotoGP
Jul 6, 2021
Why the Vinales/Yamaha MotoGP divorce satisfies both parties Prime

Why the Vinales/Yamaha MotoGP divorce satisfies both parties

On Monday, Yamaha announced it will part ways with Maverick Vinales at the end of the 2021 season - a move requested by the rider. As the already strained relationship between both parties in MotoGP hit rock bottom in recent weeks, this divorce - as Oriol Puigdemont writes - is good for both Yamaha and Vinales for a number of reasons

MotoGP
Jun 28, 2021
The unexpected Rossi/Ducati MotoGP sequel offering redemption Prime

The unexpected Rossi/Ducati MotoGP sequel offering redemption

A decade after first linking up with Ducati in what turned out to be an ill-fated period in his MotoGP career, Valentino Rossi has joined forces with the Italian marque once more - this time as a team owner. And the VR46/Ducati tie-up beginning in 2022 has the potential to right the wrongs of Rossi and Ducati's nadir of 2011/2012.

MotoGP
Jun 24, 2021
Why Yamaha is about to risk losing Valentino Rossi Prime

Why Yamaha is about to risk losing Valentino Rossi

With Valentino Rossi’s next career move imminent in MotoGP, it is set to have wide-reaching influences on a number of riders and teams on the grid. But one of the biggest impacts will be felt at Yamaha, with its pivotal role in the saga set to see it lose its appointment with ‘The Doctor’

MotoGP
Jun 22, 2021