The mystery of the final MotoGP prototype seat has been solved: after months of negotiations, Alvaro Bautista has finally retained the Honda RC213V ride with the San Carlo Gresini Honda team. The Spaniard will remain with the Italian team for another season.
The contract extension has come at a cost, however: Bautista has had to take a drastic cut in his salary to stay with the team. According to the Spanish website Motocuatro.com, Bautista’s wage has been slashed to five figures, with the amount of 90,000 euros being passed down the paddock grapevine.
Negotiations were made tougher because of the popularity of the seat: Scott Redding was in the running for the ride, as was Ben Spies for a while. Spies was the first to drop out of the race, taking a seat with the Ducati Junior team to be run by Pramac.
Redding lost out to Bautista over sponsorship: despite having interests in the UK market, San Carlo preferred an Italian or Spanish rider, to help promote the brand in their primary market. Bautista is at least getting paid, a number of riders have had to bring sponsorship money to take a CRT ride. Redding will remain with the Marc VDS Racing team and spend another year in Moto2, alongside Mika Kallio.
Bautista’s signing means there are no more factory prototype bikes still free, and silly season will now center around the CRT rides. Hector Barbera is now certain to join the Avintia BQR team currently staffed by Ivan Silva and Yonny Hernandez, with Silva likely to make way for Barbera. The remaining CRT rides are likely to be filled over the coming weeks.
GRESINI RACING AND ALVARO BAUTISTA RENEW FOR 2013
Gresini Racing and Alvaro Bautista have reached an agreement to continue together in 2013, extending the collaboration started this season. The Team, led by Fausto Gresini, and Spanish rider Bautista hope to achieve significant results together in the 2013 season.
Fausto Gresini “I am happy and proud to announce that today we have finally reached an agreement with Alvaro for the 2013 season –a source of great satisfaction for me. I believe in long term projects and I think that Alvaro still has plenty of potential. I am convinced that he will provide us with much further excitement with some great results. I think that for him we are like family and this feeling can take us very far.”
Alvaro Bautista “I am very happy to continue with Gresini Racing, because from day one I knew that being part of this Team would feel like being home. It is a great team and I am happy to continue with them; even when we have had difficulties this year, we have worked so hard together and I get on so well with everyone here. We will get to know one another even better next year and we can be even more competitive. I thank the team for the faith that they have shown in me and I hope that we can improve our results for the end of the current season.”
Source: San Carlo Gresini Honda; Photo: HRC
This article was originally published on MotoMatters, and is republished here on Asphalt & Rubber with permission by the author.