Suzuki fears customer MotoGP programme 'may cause problems'

Suzuki is unlikely to undertake a satellite MotoGP programme next season because it is scared it would "cause problems", says the manufacturer's team boss Davide Brivio

Suzuki fears customer MotoGP programme 'may cause problems'

The Japanese firm has made a poor start to the 2017 season, with new signing Andrea Iannone 15th in the championship after five races with a best finish of seventh.

His rookie team-mate Alex Rins has started just two races, with his maiden campaign marred by injury.

Suzuki's troubled start to the year comes at a time when MotoGP's satellite outfits are finalising their plans for next season, with Aspar and Avintia having both recently concluded deals to stay aligned to Ducati.

That leaves only Honda outfits LCR and Marc VDS as well as Ducati satellite squad Pramac as potential customers for 2018.

Rival manufacturers Aprilia and KTM have also stated their intention to field extra bikes next year, and Suzuki team manager Brivio believes the chances of more GSX-RRs being on the 2018 grid are now slim.

"Suzuki is a very large company, but the budget it dedicates to racing is not so high," Brivio told Autosport. "Creating a satellite team would deplete the factory team's resources.

"Our progression has stopped a bit, let's say it's on 'standby'.

"We are afraid that losing the resources that would be allocated to a satellite team may cause us problems."

Since losing star rider Maverick Vinales to Yamaha, Suzuki has not come close to replicating its form from 2016 when it took its first grand prix win since 2007 at Silverstone with the Spanish rider.

Brivio conceded that a satellite programme could be beneficial in working through problems and development, but fears the marque is not equipped to handle it at this time.

"Those two extra bikes would be a great help in obtaining data," he said. "But Suzuki has never had a satellite team.

"Moreover, this is the first time the team has been totally in-house."

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