Before the track action began at Sepang on Sunday morning, Caterham Moto Racing Team confirmed its plans to join the Moto2 World Championship from the start of 2014. It will be working alongside Suter in a technical partnership, while California’s Josh Herrin has been named as the first rider.
In a presentation led by Dato’ Kamarudin Bin Meranun, Co-Chairman of Caterham Group, the company confirmed its imminent entrance to the World Championship as well as the fact it will be developing a Caterham-Suter chassis alongside Suter Racing Technology for the next two years, marking the company’s first foray into the motorcycle industry alongside its other commitments in car manufacturing and racing.
“We are proud that Caterham Moto Racing Team took the decision to collaborate with us in their new engagement in Moto2,” says Eskil Suter of Suter Racing Technology. “As the team has the full support of their F1 organization, it will open new possibilities for development besides well-known motorcycle technology.
“Bringing together the two different worlds of F1 and Moto2 can bring to us (Suter Racing Technology) opportunities to develop certain components such as aerodynamics in different ways and therefore to improve performance. The collaboration will add value to the sport and us as a manufacturing company.”
Equally pleased was Herrin, set to make his World Championship debut as the reigning AMA Superbike Champion in the United States.
“I could not be more excited about the opportunity,” Herrin says. “It has been a goal of mine since I was young boy to race in the World Championship and it seems almost surreal now that the opportunity is finally here. I have been training very hard and I am ready to fight for great results in the super competitive Moto2 class.
“I can’t thank my manager, Bob Moore, enough for working so hard to get me on the best team for next year and I want to thank everyone at Caterham Moto Racing Team for helping make my dream come true.”
Kamarudin explained why the Caterham Group has elected to expand its motorsport interests into the two-wheeled arena:
“I am delighted to confirm that we have had our entry into Moto2 accepted and to be able to make this announcement at our home track of Sepang is a proud moment. Through AirAsia, Tony Fernandes and I have been passionate supporters of motorbike racing for many years and the establishment of our own team in Moto2 is the natural next step for Caterham Group.
“I am also very pleased to confirm our first rider, Josh Herrin, who is a very exciting talent and comes to us as the reigning AMA Superbike Champion. He shares our belief that we can achieve the ambitious goals we are setting for 2014 and beyond and we are all excited about seeing him continue to develop on the world stage. We are also going to continue to support Fahmi (Khairuddin)’s burgeoning career in Moto3, a young Malaysian rider whose potential develops every season.
“In addition, we can now confirm that we have signed a technical partnership with Suter Racing Technology for the supply of chassis. This is a pragmatic move – one that gives us access to proven design and manufacturing skills and allows us to build our team with the best possible partners from day one.”
Caterham’s second rider is to be named in ‘due course’, while Johan Stigefelt has already been named as Team Manager.