Monday, September 20

EDWARDS STAYS WITH TECH3

ALTHOUGH there were strong rumours Colin Edwards would depart MotoGP for a Superbike ride with Ducati, clearly those plans came to nothing with the announcement that Ducati would cease its factory Superbike racing activities in 2011.

As a result, Edwards has now signed on for another year with the French Monster Yamaha Tech3 team, alongside new rookie Cal Crutchlow. The 2009 Supersport World Champion, Crutchlow is currently racing for the Sterligarda Yamaha team in the Superbike World Championship.

The 36-year-old Edwards has raced for Herve Poncharal's Tech3 squad since 2008 and during that period has produced his best form in the MotoGP class. He was the top non-factory rider last season, finishing fifth in the overall championship but is currently 11th in the 2010 rankings with a best result of seventh position in Laguna Seca, Brno and Misano.

Edwards, who made his 100th appearance for Yamaha in Sunday's Motorland Aragon race, has been a key figure in establishing the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team as the leading non-factory squad in MotoGP in the 800cc four-stroke era.

“I am delighted to have signed a new one-year contract with the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team. I want to say a big thanks to Yamaha and to Tech3 for their unwavering support. I am honoured to continue my long and successful relationship with Yamaha, Herve Poncharal and all at Tech3. I love the team and feel like part of a big family and I'm thrilled that our adventure together is continuing next year. I'm excited at the challenge of competing in the MotoGP world championship again and still being competitive in probably the strongest field in history is an achievement I'm proud of. I am also looking forward to working with and helping out Cal Crutchlow next season. I'd like to think I helped James Toseland and Ben Spies adapt when they arrived in MotoGP, and I will be doing my utmost to do the same for Cal if he needs any advice. I think all of us can look forward to an exciting 2011 together.”

Meantime, Herve Poncharal, team manager for Monster Yamaha Tech3 said he was thrilled to have reached a new agreement with Edwards for the 2011 MotoGP world championship.

"His appetite and passion for racing is stronger than ever," Poncharal said, adding, "he has been an incredible asset for the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team. He is a great character but he has consistently proven that he remains one of the fastest riders in the world and I am glad that the Tech3 story with Colin will go on for one more year. I believe with Colin's experience and boundless enthusiasm and Cal's hunger and desire to succeed in MotoGP that the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team can already look forward to 2011 with tremendous optimism.”