Aleix Espargaro has extended his contract with the factory Gresini Aprilia team for a further two years, keeping him with the Italian factory until at least 2020.
Despite three mechanical errors in four races thus far in 2018, the experienced Catalan has confidence that the Noale factory will be able to get to the bottom of these issues and find the RS-GP back to a bike which can regularly challenge in the top ten.
“I am very happy to stay with Aprilia for another two years,” said the 28-year-old.
“For the first time in my career, I am able to have stability and this is important to improve and grow together.
“I have a sole objective, an obsession and that is to take the RS-GP to the podium. I wish to thank Aprilia and my entire team. We will continue working at 100% through 2020.”
Aprilia Racing Manager Romano Albesiano has attributed the extension to Aleix’s speed and his exemplary professionalism.
“This renewal is first and foremost acknowledgement of Aleix’s qualities. He is a fast rider and an exemplary professional,” said Albesiano.
“From the time he arrived, he has brought passion and motivation to the garage with a positive effect on the entire team. His contribution to the growth of the RS-GP is undeniable and I am certain that the next two years will allow us to achieve important results and above all that they will bring us back to involving, thrilling and inspiring young people and the many fans that Aprilia has all over the world.
“The signs are there, so giving the technical project continuity with a rider who knows the team and bike well lets us plan development in the best possible way with an eye to the future.”
The second Aprilia seat is firmly up in the air with Scott Redding struggling since making the move from Ducati. Both Andrea Iannone and Danilo Petrucci have been rumoured to be on the radar of the Italians with their current teams looking to replace them next year.
Photo via Gresini Aprilia