Enea Bastianini is the first rider Leopard Racing Team has announced to make their assault on the 2018 Moto3 world title.
For next season, Leopard Racing management’s choice has fallen on Enea Bastianini. Born in Rimini on 30 December 1997, his contact with motorcycles was early, to say the least: he climbed onto a bike the first time at just 3 years and 3 months of age (hence, the #33 on his top fairing). He made his début in the Moto3 World Championship in 2014, earning three podiums and the ‘Rookie of the Year’ title (won last year by Leopard Racing with Joan Mir, from whom the Italian will inherit the ride next year).
The first win of his career came in 2015 at his home GP of Misano, as well as another five podiums with which he ended the Championship ranked third in the standings. Last year, also astride a Honda, he attempted an assault on the world title and improved by finishing the season as runner-up. He is currently lying ninth in the standings.
Miodrag Kotur, COO Leopard Racing commented: “We are delighted to welcome Enea Bastianini into our operation. In the last few years, we have faced many opponents and always noted their strengths: he is a rider with a great talent and we are confident that he will be able to adapt quickly to our method of working for the world title.”
“I'm delighted to have reached this deal for the 2018 season with the Leopard Racing Team, who have shown in a few years to be an inspirational team and remain at the top of the Moto3 category –Bastianini said – I am also pleased to be able to continue my experience in the World Championship still riding an official Honda. Finally, I would like to thank my current team for the confidence they gave me, and I will do my utmost in the final part of the season to reach the pre-set goals.”
Carlo Pernat, Bastianini’s manager, added: “I am very pleased that Enea has signed with a professional and winning team like Leopard Racing, who are now well established as a top team. It's a team where Enea will surely do well, because technically he knows how to work, the results are in him. I anticipate and hope in the future that they can achieve the common goal of taking the World Championship.”