KTM has announced that ex-Tech 3 MotoGP rider Jonas Folger will join Mika Kallio and Dani Pedrosa to complete the brands 2023 MotoGP test team.
The German ace had been expected to be confirmed as KTM’s newest signing after completing a three-day test with the marque at Jerez towards the end of last year, KTM admitting last year it was looking to sign a younger rider alongside Pedrosa with long-time tester Kallio set to focus more on rider coaching and performance going forward.
KTM Motorsports Director Pit Beirer says that 29-year old Folger’s past pedigree was key to him securing the role as the manufacturer’s latest tester, the Austrian explaining that his unique riding style relative to Pedrosa and Kallio will “help us with our development” in making the RC16 more user friendly across a variety of riders.
“As the MotoGP season comes closer then the schedule for our test team also comes to life,” said Beirer.
“Not many people see the crucial work these guys are making towards our project but their contribution is essential.
“For that reason, we have chosen to add Jonas to the team alongside Mika and Dani; who have both already built-up so much knowledge of our race bike and the steps we have made.
“He knows what it takes to put a motorcycle at the front of a Grand Prix and he is still young and has a lot to contribute.
“Compared to Dani and Mika he has a different body-type and style and that will also help us with our development.”
Folger’s last grand prix start came in the Moto2 class back in 2019 after standing in for an injured Khairul Idham Pawi for a total of five races, though he failed to score with a best result of 17th coming in the Dutch TT at Assen as well his home outing at the Sachsenring.
His last premier class start was at Aragon in his rookie – and so far only – campaign in ’17 with the Tech 3 Yamaha squad that was cut short by an illness later identified as Gilbert Syndrome, with a best finish of second coming at his native Sachsenring.
A potential wildcard outing for Folger has not yet been communicated by KTM, with test team colleague Pedrosa’s participation in May’s Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez its only confirmed extra outing.
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