Less than two months after winning Suzuki’s first MotoGP championship in 20 years, Davide Brivio has decided to leave his role as manager of the Suzuki Ecstar MotoGP team and move to lead the Alpine F1 team in four-wheel racing’s premier class.
The move was reported last night by Autosportand confirmed by a press release from Suzuki this morning.
The news comes as a massive shock to Suzuki and the MotoGP world. It is also a serious blow to Suzuki’s MotoGP project.
Brivio was instrumental in putting the team together to run Suzuki’s return to MotoGP in 2015. Brivio joined Suzuki in 2013, at the very beginning of the project which launched the GSX-RR upon the world, and has overseen the team’s steady success.
Brivio has been a key player in finding and hiring the staff for the team, as well as being the main driver behind Suzuki’s philosophy of trying to hire and develop young talent and turn them into champions.
That choice was proven to be correct by Joan Mir winning the 2020 MotoGP title.
The Italian has a history of success. Davide Brivio first entered the World Superbike championship in 1990, running a private team for Yamaha. He then went on to run Yamaha’s factory WorldSBK team, before switching to MotoGP in 2002, leading the project when Grand Prix racing went four stroke.
Brivio was instrumental in persuading Valentino Rossi to leave Honda and join Yamaha, going on to win five championships for Yamaha with both Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo, until he departed Yamaha for Ducati with Rossi.
When Rossi left Ducati at the end of 2012, that left Brivio at a loose end, a situation which Suzuki leaped upon to their benefit.
Brivio has been instrumental in not just staff decisions, but he was also one of the drivers behind persuading Suzuki to set up a separate racing department, along the lines of the other major manufacturers.
That organizational change made decision-making a great deal easier, and gave the racing department and team much more freedom to act without requiring the approval of Suzuki’s top management.
Davide Brivio leaves behind a huge legacy in MotoGP, and big boots for Suzuki to try to fill.
Source: Suzuki Racing; Photo: © 2019 Jensen Beeler / Asphalt & Rubber – All Rights Reserved