Augusto Fernandez has 2024 MotoGP ride ‘in theory’
Friday 22nd September, 2023 - 9:00am
Augusto Fernandez appears not especially confident that he will be on the MotoGP grid in 2024 as KTM tries to fit five contracted riders onto four seats.
The Austrian marque has committed to elevating Moto2 championship leader Pedro Acosta to the premier class, yet the incumbents at Red Bull KTM Factory Racing and GasGas Factory Racing Tech3 are all contracted for next year.
Red Bull KTM pilot Jack Miller was sensationally linked to a big-money reserve role, a rumour which he denied, with the more likely course being that GasGas duo Pol Espargaro and Fernandez are fighting to save their rides.
The latter was asked ahead of this weekend’s Indian Grand Prix if the speculation about his future is a distraction.
“For sure, it doesn’t help,” admitted the 2022 Moto2 champion.
“But, I have my contract signed so I have the same news as everyone else.
“So, in theory, I have a ride for next year so I want to believe that and I’m focused on the job in hand and on 2023.
“I want to finish the year in the best possible way and bring some good results until the end of the season.
“Hopefully, we can get the ride again in 2024.”
Fernandez is 14th in the standings midway through his rookie season in the premier class, but will be on a level playing field given MotoGP races at the Buddh International Circuit for the very first time this weekend.
“Yeah, I think it will help a little bit, or at least I hope it will,” he said of the fact that none of his rivals have experience at the former Indian Formula 1 venue.
“I feel like, every track, I’m reaching the level late on Sunday.
“I’m not bad on a Sunday, especially with pace, but, as I say, I need to recover a lot from the weekend away starting from zero to this weekend.
“This track is new for everybody, so I hope to start closer to the top guys and at least be more competitive from Friday.”
Free Practice 1 starts this afternoon (AEST).