After finally seizing its first victory since 2007, the Suzuki MotoGP team is doubling-down on its performance for 2017 and beyond.
Only two seasons in after their three-year hiatus from MotoGP and Suzuki has shown everyone that the break was well-needed, and well-utilized. Together with Maverick Vinales, the team hounded Yamaha and Honda in 2016; making sure to stay on their asses throughout. Culminating in multiple podium finishes and a fourth place in the championship, Suzuki is making it clear it has no intention of being a one-shot-wonder.
— Andrea Iannone (@andreaiannone29) January 1, 2017
Though their attitude and drive is in the right place, they’ve got two brand new riders to supply with the best they’ve got. Former Ducati rider Andrea Iannone and former Moto2 rider and MotoGP greenhorn Alex Rins. It remains to be seen if Rins has what it takes in the primer class, but one would hope that Suzuki hasn’t blindly thrown their support behind a novice. Iannone on the other hand has proven he can be aggressive and capable out on the track. Qualities that Suzuki would be wise to leverage against their entrenched competition.
Davide Brivio took a moment to reflect on the team’s performance in 2016 before locking down their mantra for 2017:
“We never said ‘we want to win in three years, in five years or whatever. Clearly we would like to be a championship contender as soon as possible. The target was to get close to the Ducati and then close to Yamaha and Honda. We kind of did that, we won a race, we got a podium. Now the next step is to maybe be regularly race win contenders. Of course this is the most difficult part, but that’s what we have to do next.” – Davide Brivio
It would be a genuinely refreshing sight to see Suzuki give Honda and Yamaha a run for their money. We could use a bit more vying for the title up top.