Saturday, May 26, 2007

MotoGP: Kurtis to ride for Team Roberts at Mugello

With Kenny Roberts Jr. not having been able to sort out technical issues, younger brother Kurtis is being brought in as development rider...

Back in March this year, Team Roberts got a fresh lease of life, with F1 MAX-X and MGM's Treasure Island Hotel and Casino coming in as new team sponsors, and bringing in some much-needed cash with them. However, while their bikes’ livery changed, their race fortunes have remained pretty much the same – Team Roberts is going nowhere.

Now, for the next weekend’s race in Mugello (and perhaps also for the one after that, in Barcelona…), Team Roberts have roped in Kenny Roberts Jr.’s younger brother, Kurtis, who’ll be helping the team as a development rider. That’s because Kenny Roberts Jr., 500cc world champ in the year 2000, has not been able to solve the team’s technical problems. This is largely due to his old-school dirt-tracker riding style, which doesn’t work with current 800cc machines.

Kenny Roberts jr., 500cc world champ in the year 2000, has seen little success in MotoGP for the last many years...

Kenny Roberts Jr. was able to put in a reasonably good performance last year, since the 990cc V5 KR211V was more compatible with his riding style. In 2006, he finished third twice (in Barcelona and Portugal), and got another five fifth-place finishes. This year has not been good for him up till now, but with Kurtis (who’s ridden in MotoGP occasionally with his father’s team in 2004 and 2005) coming in as a development rider, things just might improve for Team Roberts.

More MotoGP:
Rossi: Biggest earning star in MotoGP
Kenny Roberts announces new venture, KR Tuned
In-depth: 2007 MotoGP Kawasakis
Memorable: Cagiva's 500cc GP racer
The mighty Honda NSR500
Marco Lucchinelli: 1981 500cc motorcycle GP racing world champ
Nicky Hayden: "I'm not giving up..."
John Hopkins: "I'm better than Hayden!"
Blast from the past: Silver Dream Racer

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