Mahindra Racing expand presence in Moto3 as engine supplier
Mahindra Racing have announced that their engines will also be used by three other teams in the 2014 two-wheel Motor3 Championship that runs alongside the MotoGP. The Indian outfit made its Moto3 debut only three seasons ago.
Mahindra have quickly gained respect across the paddock and finished third in the constructors' standings in 2013, behind the KTM powered teams.
They will be supplying engines to San Carlo Team Italia, another Italian unit Ambrogio Racing and France's CIP Moto3, all previously on Honda.
"We can proudly say eight bikes on the grid will use our engines. We have come a long way in three seasons and will hopefully improve our position in 2014," Mahindra Racing CEO Mufaddal Choonia said Thursday.
The bikes are built in collaboration with Suter Racing Technology.
Mahindra, who made their Moto3 debut in 2011, recorded their first podium finish in 2013 when Miguel Oliveira rode to third place at Sepang, Malaysia. The Portuguese rider will team up with Australian Arthur Sissis for the season beginning March 23 at Doha, Qatar.
Moto3 shifted from 125 cc two-stroke engines to become a 250 cc four-stroke class in 2012. Moto GP has moved to 1000 cc from 800 cc and Moto3 from 250 cc two-stroke to 600 cc four stroke.
Does Mahindra have any plans to move to the more powerful Moto2 category?
"As of now we are satisfied with what we are our doing. We need to build on our past performances. Moto2 can't be ruled out in the future but we are not thinking about it yet," Mahindra Racing chairman SP Shukla told IANS.
The teams says it would love to hire an Indian rider but it is not feasible at the moment.
"Unfortunately, no Indian rider is good enough for the job. You can't blame them as well with little infrastructure for two-wheeler racing in India," added Choonia.
The Choonia-led squad will start testing in Valencia next week, followed by two tests in Jerez, Spain.
Mahindra will also compete in the inaugural Formula E electric car racing series beginning in September.
(Posted on 06-02-2014)