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Who gets squeezed out of MotoGP at the end of 2017?

There’s a bit of a squeeze down the far end of MotoGP as the promotion of Franco Morbidelli into Marc VDS’ senior team means someone has to go - not only from that squad but from the championship itself as a second LCR Honda will go to Taka Nakagaami, should it appear.

Jack Miller is likely to remain where he is and partner Morbidelli at Marc VDS despite having reached the end of his three-year HRC tenure. Whether the team will stay with Honda is a different matter as Suzuki have come-a-knocking with a satellite team deal.

Both Scott Redding and Sam Lowes are having a pretty hard time of it. Redding just can’t find feeling or grip with the GP16 while Lowes isn’t being given the same equipment as Aleix Espargaro and is trying too hard to get results.


Lowes has Roger Burnett in his corner and the contract drawn up will be concrete and watertight but whether the relationship will be ok should a lever been inserted under the Lincolnshireman’s backside is another matter. Most of the paddock, including Cal Crutchlow, have sprung to Lowes’ defence and said the boy needs time. Hopefully Romano Albesiano will listen.

Redding’s problems are baffling. Massively fast on his day and a demon in the rain, Redding’s confidence has slowly wound its way down the pan to the point where he couldn’t find any pace in Saturday’s wet qualifying. No-one seems to have any answers for Redding and it’s a shame he can’t ask his crew chief from last year who is now in Dani Pedrosa’s corner.

Francesco Guidotti would do well to look at the man who sits next to Redding as well as Redding himself because as the old saying goes, you don’t forget how to ride fast, you can only ride as fast as the thing underneath you.

Redding is clearly deeply unhappy to the point of tears in his media debrief on Sunday. He might not like the idea now, but a year on a factory Panigale in WorldSBK might do him the power of good. Dorna has the money and power to make that happen.

Hector Barbera will more than likely remain in the Avintia squad, Karel Abraham the same at Pull and Bear so the squeeze will come down to Loris Baz and Tito Rabat, and Rabat will be the one who pops out as he would fit a move into the Red Bull Honda WorldSBK squad the best.

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