Suzuki Confirms Single-Rider Team for 2011

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After much hemming and hawing, Suzuki has finally committed to fielding only a single rider for the 2011 season. There has been much speculation that Suzuki would have only Alvaro Bautista at the helm of the Suzuki GSV-R next year, but Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta made it very clear that he was going to keep Suzuki to its commitment to field two bikes in MotoGP.

Suzuki seems to be taking its chances with Dorna’s legal threats though, and rumors suggest that the Japanese company has struck a deal with the MotoGP rights holder that extends its MotoGP involvement in exchange for this contractual concession.

While Suzuki is reported to be in a precarious financial situation, Dorna is also facing a problem of its own with a diminishing grid size in MotoGP. Not wanting to see Suzuki withdraw all its support from the premiere racing class like Kawasaki did last year, Dorna may be cutting its losses, and hoping that Spanish up-start Inmotec will replace the missing Suzuki, and restore MotoGP’s grid to its 18 bike mandate.

Whether Inmotec actually makes it to the grid is up for speculation (they certainly have gone to a lot of effort to develop a bike they will only race for one season), but what does seem certain is that Alvaro Bautista, and the rest of the Suzuki factory team, will be in MotoGP for 2011. With rumors rife that title sponsor Rizla will be out of the picture, it remains unclear who will come into the fold to help shoulder the financial burden of Suzuki’s GP effort. More on that as we get it.

Source: Suzuki Racing