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MotoE World Cup – Who are the riders to watch?

The MotoE World Cup sparks into life at the German MotoGP this weekend... but who are the top riders to watch?

WORLD Champions, MotoGP race winners, World Superbike stars, a top female racer and not a single emission between them... the inaugural FIM MotoE World Cup is here to spark up your Sundays, but who are the riders we're tipping for success?

Sete Gibernau

Nationality: Spanish

Team: Envision Pons Racing Team

We say: Twice MotoGP runner-up & more premier class podiums than anyone else… but very race rusty

Arguably the most famous of the 18-strong field, Gibernau has an impressive repertoire honed over 11 seasons competing in the premier class, where he notched up nine wins, 29 podiums and ended the season runner-up on two occasions. However, his last international appearance came a full 10 years ago and even then that was a shortlived half-season comeback from originally retiring in 2006. Can he really shrug off a decade out of action?

Bradley Smith

Nationality: British

Team: One Energy Racing

We say: The sole British representative is in terms of race readiness and fitness the safest rider to put money on

Whilst his MotoGP tenure never quite sparkled, Bradley Smith was never considered to be making up the numbers at the highest level either. Whilst the time to exit MotoGP was a natural one, MotoE is an enticing new project for a rider that has also kept himself busy on the premier stage with Aprilia MotoGP performances. Quickest in testing, couple that to One Energy Racing (Sepang’s Petronas SRT team under a different name) vast funding reserves, Smith is arguably the title favourite.

Randy de Puniet

Nationality: French

Team: D2 LCR E-Team

We say: Impressive back catalogue of results… though you do need to go way back

Another of the veteran contingent, Randy de Puniet may not have been at the forefront of international motorsport in recent years, but he has remained active in the Endurance World Championship where he has re-established himself as a front-runner. Hooking up with his former MotoGP team LCR, de Puniet may well benefit from having a few familiar faces around and comes with a wealth of experience.

Niccolo Canepa

Nationality: Italian

Team: D2 LCR E-Team

We say: Quick, adaptable but never quite around long enough to make the step up – this may well be the time for him to shine

Still young for a rider that seems to have jumped on a vast array of different motorbikes across different series’ over the years, Canepa has skipped from MotoGP to Moto2 to WorldSBK to EWC without ever really sticking around long enough to show exactly what he can do. This could well make him MotoE’s darkest horse.

Maria Herrera

Nationality: Spanish

Team: Angel Nieto Team

We say: A great opportunity to show what she is capable of against some formidable competition

A mainstay of the Moto3 series before switching to production racing, first in Supersport 300 and WorldSSP, Maria Herrera has an excellent opportunity to show what she can do riding equal machinery against some very notable names on tracks she knows better than most in the field.

Nico Terol

Nationality: Spanish

Team: Angel Nieto Team

We say: A rider with a point to prove having seen his GP career hit the skids after title success

A 125GP World Champion, a multiple Moto2 race winner and pretty handy on a Superbike, it’s surprising Nico Terol’s career seems to have hit the barriers before he has turned 30. MotoE is a perfect chance for the Spaniard to re-establish his reputation and he has been quick in testing – definitely one to watch.

Alex de Angelis

Nationality: Sammarinese

Team: Alma Pramac Racing MotoE

We say: Blistering pace on his day but those days haven’t been seen for a while

Wildly fast or just wild at times, Alex de Angelis made his mark in MotoGP but has largely made up the numbers since, whether it was Moto2 or WorldSBK. Still, the San Marino rider ranks as one of the most experienced in MotoE and he has been substantially quicker than team-mate Josh Hook in testing.

Eric Granado

Nationality: Brazilian

Team: Avintia Esponsorama Racing

We say: Emerged as the surprise front-runner after race simulation and has turned heads with his speed

He didn’t make much of an impression during his sporadic appearances in Moto2, but Brazilian youngster Eric Granado was the comfortable front-runner during the recent MotoE race simulation. How much of that pace in Valencia was down to his knowledge of the track from competing in the CEV will soon show though…

Xavier Simeon

Nationality: Belgian

Team: Avintia Esponsorama Racing

We say: Like Smith a direct convert from MotoGP, but with plenty to prove after a disastrous 2018

It took Xavier Simeon a long time to reach MotoGP but once he was there, he didn’t make the most of it, scoring exactly 0 points in his rookie season. Dropped from Avintia’s MotoGP line up despite its two-year deal, he thus winds up in MotoE with a lot to prove to both himself and the team.

Mike di Meglio

Nationality:French

Team:EG 0,0 Marc VDS

We say:Respected racer who never got a proper chance in MotoGP but very fast on his day – worth a punt

Whilst two seasons in the CRT/Open categories of MotoGP didn’t reveal Mike di Meglio’s true abilities at the highest-level, it is easy to forget he was once of a 125GP champion, albeit one that saw his career stall when he didn’t adapt so well to the new Moto2 era. A very fast rider in EWC now, di Meglio has a renewed chance to show his true quality on the GP stage.

Hector Garzo

Nationality: Spanish 

Team: Tech 3 E-Racing

We say: Quick in testing and well-entrenched in Tech 3, one to watch 

Another rider giving MotoE a go having struggled to get a foothold in Moto2, Hector Garzo has been quick in testing and was on pole position for the recent race simulation. Having enjoyed success with Tech 3 in the CEV series, Garzo has taken to MotoE with aplom

Lorenzo Savadori

Nationality:Italian

Team:Trentino Gresini MotoE

We say: From WorldSBK to MotoE is a tricky side-step but Savadori has a lot of talent to call upon

With his WorldSBK career stalling on the back of Aprilia’s dwindling commitment to developing the RSV4, Lorenzo Savadori was frozen out of a ride for 2019 but has a chance to show his talents in MotoE with Gresini (who run Aprilia’s MotoGP effort). However, this will be his first foray into GP and it will be quite a jump directly from big electronic-laden Superbike.

Niki Tuuli

Nationality: Finnish

Team: Ajo MotoE 

We say: Something of an unknown quantity at GP level but Tuuli clearly has youth and talent on his side

An exciting new talent that burst onto the scene in WorldSSP with four podiums in his first five races, Niki Tuuli hasn’t quite transferred that same form to Moto2 where he struggled in 2018. However, the Finn is one of the younger and more exciting prospects on the grid, while he has hooked up countrymen Ajo Motorsport for a match made in MotoE heaven. Arguably the rider with most still to come in his career.

Jesko Raffin

Nationality:  Swiss

Team: Dynavolt Intact GP

We say: Flashes of pace in Moto2 but needs to show consistency

After several seasons in Moto2, Jesko Raffin turns up in MotoE with the Dynavolt Intact GP set up. Not exactly a frontrunner in Moto2, the Swiss rider nonetheless showed flashes of form during four seasons, peaking with a best finish of fourth place in Australia in 2017.

Josh Hook

Nationality: Australian

Team: Octo Pramac MotoE

We say: Josh Hook flies flag for Australia butlittle to show for success-wise in other series’

One of only two non-Europeans on the grid, Josh Hook is the sole Australian representative on the second of the Octo Pramac MotoE bikes. A podium in the Suzuka 8 Hours notwithstanding, he has competed in World Superbikes and Moto2 but impressions have been fairly marginal thus far.

Kenny Foray

Nationality: French

Team: Tech 3 E-Racing

We say: Very experienced but little-known, compared to his own twin let alone his rivals.

Twin to Freddy Foray, with whom he won an EWC world title, Kenny Foray steps out from behind his brother’s shadow to get a solo world championship shot in MotoE. Hugely experienced but with few credits at the highest level, Foray is something of an unknown. 

Matteo Ferrari

Nationality: Italian

Team: Trentino Gresini MotoE

We say: Middling Moto3 performances make it hard to gauge whether Ferrari has the speed to live up to his name

Matteo Ferrari completes the Trentino Gresini MotoE line up and brings three seasons of Moto3 experience to the table, albeit precious little success with it, but very impressive with his top five in the MotoE simulation recently. 

Mattia Casadei

Nationality: Italian

Team: Ongetta SIC58 Squadra Corse

We say: A big ask for Mattia Casadei to shine on his GP debut but SIC58 will undoubtedly attract plenty of attention

Bringing the hallowed Marco ‘SIC58’ Simoncelli moniker to MotoE, Ongetta SIC58 Squadra Corse is the only sole Moto3 team in MotoE. Mattia Casadei has spent much of his time in Italian-based series’, with this being his first foray into the GP paddock

Comments

Information about riders makes me very interested. I admire Bradley Smith very much. I hope that you will have
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