MOTOGP ROOKIE LOWES READY TO ROLL
There’s a new British rookie on the scene in the premier class next year, with 2013 World Supersport champion Sam Lowes stepping up to Motogp with Aprilia.
Lowes, 26, moves to the top class after three challenging years in the intermediate category. At first battling with the uncompetitive Speed Up chassis, he would eventually become a Moto2 title contender after a move to Kalex for the 2016 season.
Already a GP race winner, Lowes acknowledges the challenge ahead as he joins Aleix Espargaro in the factory Aprilia squad, but has enough confidence in himself that, in time, he can work towards becoming Britain’s next top GP star.
“When I’m riding well, I know how good I am,” he said. “That’s not me being big-headed – I’ve won Grand Prix races, I’ve had pole positions. The end of 2016 was tough and I was injured for the final tests, but I know what I can do.
“I’m a different person to what I was before. I’m not expecting to go out and win my first race, this is Motogp! Aleix has a lot more experience than me, but look at Viñales – he will go into next year a favourite, and in the first four races, when he was Aleix’s team-mate, he couldn’t beat him.
“That’s what I’ve got to look at; getting close to and beating Aleix towards the end of my first year and into year two. He’s a solid GP rider, a deserving GP rider, and I know I won’t be far away from that goal.”
Lowes is realistic – but optimistic – about his step up