Ezpeleta wants CRT bikes on the pace

Autosport

MotoGP commercial chief Carmelo Ezpeleta is determined to ensure the gap between the works and CRT bikes in 2012 is not too large, and that the new class remains cost-effective.

Nine of the 21 bikes in the 2012 MotoGP field will be running to the Claiming Rule Teams regulation, which allows for a greater element of production technology in what must remain primarily a prototype motorcycle, and Ezpeleta has opened admitted that he sees the lower-cost formula as the series' future.

So far in testing, the CRT bikes have been clearly slower than the traditional MotoGP machines, but Ezpeleta is adamant that the championship will not become a two-tier contest, and that the works teams' pace and spending must be controlled.

"We must immediately do two things: The first is to keep the grid is as compact as possible," he was quoted as saying by the official MotoGP website.

"This is not to say that there will be no differences, but to make sure that the CRT bikes are as close as possible to the factory bikes.

"Second, that factory bikes don't technologically advance to performance levels that could be dangerous, with costs that can't be assumed.

"For the problem is not just how to reduce costs, it's that if someone invests a significant amount, wins the championship and then leaves, it leaves you with nothing."

Ezpeleta believes a common ECU is likely to be the answer to containing both costs and speeds, and keeping the CRT bikes within range of the works machinery.

"I think we will be able to resolve these issues by consensus," he said. "If not, we have ideas, such as the introduction of a spec ECU or a rev limit, which could be launched as early as 2013, a year in which the championship will be completely different compared to 2012.

"The establishment of the single unit, according to the manufacturers, would be the biggest limiter to continued technological development.

"We are looking at what the best way of limiting the performance - and thereby costs - will be, to ensure that a satellite team will be able to obtain bikes at a maximum of one million Euros per season, whether through selling, through a long-term leasing commitment, or through CRTs, although this cost seems excessive to me for a CRT."

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