Both Dani Pedrosa and Mika Kallio have new MotoGP test rider contracts for 2021. KTM has once again renewed them in hopes of retaining their upward race win trajectory.
While Kallio has been a KTM competition and test rider for more than a decade, Pedrosa came on board in 2018. Since that time, KTM’s MotoGP race pace is on an upward trend. Since Pedrosa’s signing in 2019, KTM riders have taken three race wins and eight podiums.
MotoGP Riders Speak
Both riders seem quite pleased with their new contracts. Finnish rider Mika Kallio said:
“It is great to continue this project. Five years have passed already with this crew and I cannot believe time has gone so fast. It has been rewarding to see the development of the bike and all the phases which have got us here. Especially in 2020 with victories and podiums; it has been amazing. It is good to see all the hard work and dedication paying off for everyone involved in the project. I have worked with KTM for eleven years now during my career, which is basically half of my whole time in racing. KTM is my second family and I am proud and privileged to continue being with this company. I think the results of this year motivate both the crew and riders towards an even better 2021, so I am already looking forward to the upcoming season. I think we have now what it takes to fight at the top.” – Mika Kallio to Motogp.com
Dani Pedrosa also said some pretty positive things about his relationship with KTM:
“KTM is very keen to keep improving and I’m only too happy to keep working with them and helping their riders onto bigger goals. I want to thank Pit Beirer, Stefan Pierer and Red Bull for all their trust in me.” – Dani Pedrosa to Motogp.com
Echoing both Kallio’s and Pedrosa’s thoughts, Pit Beirer, KTM Motorsports Director, said:
“We’re pleased to be able to keep the stability and all the knowledge we have with our current testing team. In 2020 we could show how well and how fast we are working behind-the-scenes for our MotoGP program and both Mika and Dani’s input were important in the progress we have made. It’s only been four years but it gives the whole company a lot of pride and excitement to be able to set new targets and to make more memories in MotoGP.” – Pit Beirer to Motogp.com
For a team to stand on a MotoGP podium and take race wins in only four years is quite an accomplishment. Both Kallio’s and Pedrosa’s inputs are one of the reasons why KTM is where it is now.
Congrats to Kallio, Pedrosa, and KTM for a job well done at the highest motorcycle road racing level.
All photo credit: KTM