Michel Fabrizio will ride for Alstare Suzuki next season as a sole rider after confirming a one-year deal with the Belgian team.
Fabrizio, who was without a ride for 2011 following the closure of the Ducati Xerox team, has confirmed a contract that will see him become Suzuki’s sole factory entry in the 2011 WSB championship.
Fabrizio, who impressed to finish third in the 2009 championship behind Ben Spies and Noriyuki Haga, disappointed last year with an eighth place finish in the championship, having claimed just one win all season.
But the Italian, who tested with the team at Magny-Cours after the season finale two weeks ago, declared himself delighted at the chance of a fresh start.
“I am very happy with how the tests went at Magny-Cours last week, even though the weather was not so good on the first day,” said Fabrizio. “I am a bit surprised how easily I got used to the Suzuki Alstare bike after three years of riding a V-Twin. A twin requires a completely different style to a four, so to jump onto a four and get comfortable so soon is a very good sign. Having known the team from before obviously helped and soon I felt as if I had never been away.
“My first impressions of the bike are that it feels strong and can be a title contender. Leon showed that this year, so I am looking forward to more tests and then racing it. This championship is very hard and competitive and you have to be on your game all the time. But, I know I have a good team behind me and I think we can have a very good season next year.”
Alstare ran a two bike team last season, with championship runner-up Leon Haslam and Sylvain Guintoli but a series of cutbacks by Suzuki has seen them reduce factory support for racing. It is widely expected that the Rizla Suzuki MotoGP team will also revert to a single rider entry next year.