MotoGP Rookies Cup returns for 2010

Series grows in fourth season

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, Nov. 25, 2009
The Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup will expand to ten races over six rounds in 2010.

Entering its fourth season of competition, the MotoGP Rookies Cup offers young racers the opportunity to compete on world class circuits at select MotoGP rounds. The 2009 season featured eight races over six rounds, but the 2010 calendar will include more double-race weekends, expanding the schedule to ten races.

Double-race weekends will be held at rounds in Jerez, Spain, Assen, Netherlands, Sachsenring, Germany, and Brno, Czech Republic. Italy’s Mugello and Misano circuits will hold single-race rounds.

The additional rounds may be the result of increased support by KTM which supplies the series’ RC125 race bikes. KTM announced its withdrawal from 125cc Grand Prix racing in October with plans to redirect resources to youth racing series such as the MotoGP Rookies Cup.

After three years of competition, the MotoGP Rookies Cup series sees more of its alumni moving on to professional Grand Prix racing careers. 2009 Cup winner Jakub Kornfeil competed in five 125cc Grand Prix races in 2009 and is set to compete a full season in the class in 2010.

California's Jake Gagne will be America's sole representative in the 2010 MotoGP Rookies Cup.

“It is what I have been working for. I knew that winning the Rookies Cup would be my best chance of having a full time Grand Prix ride,” says Kornfeil, a 16-year-old from the Czech Republic. “So now I have a very good opportunity in Grand Prix as a Red Bull athlete and I know that I still have a lot of learning to do but I want to be racing in the top twenty and get some points if I can.”

Norwegian 17-year-old Sturla Fagerhaug is trying to find a ride in the 125cc class in 2010 after finishing second to Kornfeil. Fifth-place Rookies Cup finisher Florian Marino, 16, from France, will enter the European 600 Superstock series with the Ten Kate race team. 2007 Rookies Cup winner Johann Zarco, 2007 runner-up Lorenzo Savadori, and 2008 runner-up Luis Salom all competed as full-time 125cc Grand prix racers in 2009.

The 2010 Rookies Cup will be broadcast live on the series’ website, American racing fans will be able to cheer on Ramona, Calif., native Jake Gagne, who will return to race the 2010 Rookies Cup. Gagne finished sixth in 2009, but with three of the five racers that finished ahead of him moving on, the 16-year-old will be considered one of the favorites for the 2010 season.

2010 MotoGP Rookies Cup provisional calendar:

  • Pre-season test - April 12, 13 and 15, Valencia, Spain
  • Races 1 and 2 - May 1-2, Jerez, Spain
  • Race 3 - June 5, Mugello, Italy
  • Races 4 and 5 - June 25-26, Assen, Netherlands
  • Races 6 and 7 - July 17-18, Sachsenring, Germany
  • Races 8 and 9 - Aug. 14-15, Brno, Czech Republic
  • Race 10 - Sept. 4, Misano, San Marino

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