KTM has revealed that MotoGP privateer team Tech 3 will be joining its camp and will run a pair of RC16 bikes in 2019, becoming the Austrian firm's first satellite team in MotoGP. Tech 3 had recently announced that it would end its longstanding partnership with Yamaha at the end of the 2018 season.
"We are very happy to join forces with Tech 3 in MotoGP from 2019 onwards," said KTM motorsport boss Pit Beirer. "The team has many years of experience and achieved a lot of great results in the championship. Their professional structure will make us stronger."
KTM completed its debut season as a works team in MotoGP last year, ending up fifth in the manufacturers' standings with a best finish of ninth.
Prior to the announcement of the KTM deal, Tech 3 boss Herve Poncharal revealed his team has reached a three-year agreement that his outfit was entitled to "exactly the same spec" of bikes as those fielded by the works team.
"Having four KTM RC16s on the grid is also another big step for us, both for the development of our MotoGP bike and expanding KTM's structure in the paddock," Beirer added. "From the Red Bull Rookies Cup up to MotoGP there is a clear path to the top. We are looking forward to starting a great cooperation and I'm thankful towards Herve Poncharal for the future trust in KTM.”
At the moment, KTM fields factory riders Miguel Oliveira and Brad Binder in the supporting Moto2 class – although neither KTM nor its new partner, Tech 3, have confirmed any rider plans beyond the end of the 2018 season.
Tech 3 will field Johann Zarco and Hafizh Syahrin in its final MotoGP season with Yamaha, with the latter drafted in as a late replacement for Jonas Folger, who has taken ill. Zarco enjoyed a breakthrough rookie season on a Tech 3 Yamaha, last year, finishing fifth overall; and is known to be on KTM's radar for 2019. He has been a frontrunner throughout all of MotoGP's 2018 pre-season testing and has set the fastest time in the final test in Qatar.