Estrella Galicia Marc VDS have this morning confirmed Tom Luthi will make the switch to MotoGP with them in 2018, leaving Sam Lowes facing a return to Moto2 next season.
Luthi’s deal means the Estrella Galicia-backed team will have two MotoGP rookies in their garage as Franco Morbidelli also steps up from the middleweight class.
With nine podium finishes in 2017, including a race win in Brno, Luthi currently lies second in the Moto2 championship standings, 26 points behind Morbidelli. He has a little MotoGP experience having tested for KTM in 2016 before their entry to the MotoGP World Championship in 2017.
“There were a number of options open to us when we were looking for a MotoGP rider for the 2018 season, but Thomas Lüthi was the unanimous choice, despite him being a MotoGP rookie. A former 125cc World Champion, his consistency over seven seasons in Moto2 has been incredible, with a sixth place in 2013 the only time he’s finished outside the top five in the championship,” said team owner Marc Van Der Straten.
“He’s been a constant thorn in our side in the intermediate class and this year is no different, with his consistency again making him a serious threat to our title aspirations. Tom is a good fit for our team and I am both happy and proud to welcome him to the Marc VDS racing family.”
Lowes had been in the frame to take the second Marc VDS seat but now looks likely to go back to Moto2.