Dani Pedrosa will become a test rider for the Red Bull KTM team under a two-year deal announced by the team.
Pedrosa is now three races away from retirement from racing in MotoGP, after which he will swap from the factory Repsol Honda team to the factory KTM squad.
The Spaniard will join the currently injured Mika Kallio in the Austrian marque’s testing ranks, while Pol Espargaro will have a new team-mate in Johann Zarco in the race team.
Zarco’s current team, Tech3, will at the same time switch its satellite affiliation from Yamaha to KTM.
“To have a rider of Dani’s skill and experience as part of our MotoGP project is another strong sign that we are moving in the right direction and we are still pushing as hard as we can,” said KTM Motorsports Director Pit Beirer.
“We have seen how competitive MotoGP is this year and how fractions of a second can sometimes hide real progress and valuable lessons.
“We hope – and we are very excited – that Dani’s input alongside Mika Kallio and feeding into the two teams we’ll have on the grid next year will really help to close the gap even further.
“I think we can feel very optimistic about our possibilities for the upcoming seasons.
“I’d like to thank the whole crew at the factory, all the strong effort at the races and for all those testing miles as we come close to the end of our second year.
“Also to Dani: it is great that he believes and trusts in us and what we are doing.”
The 33-year-old Pedrosa is currently 11th in the MotoGP world championship and facing a first winless season in his 13-year span in the premier class.
KTM, meanwhile, is yet to crack a race finish higher than ninth in nearly two seasons in MotoGP.
The Michelin Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix continues today.