Husqvarna announced it will enter the 2014 Moto3 World Championship, fielding Danny Kent and Niklas Ajo in the 250cc road racing class.
The team will be sponsored by energy drink maker Red Bull, which means the team won’t be lacking in funds. Husqvarna did not mention the motorcycle the team will use, but with the company now owned by KTM Chief Executive Officer Stefan Pierer, the Red Bull Husqvarna team will use machines similar to KTM’s winning Moto3 racer.
In fact, KTM had previously announced the signing of Kent to race for the Red Bull KTM Ajo team, so the only change may be in the branding.
“Running Husqvarna in the Moto3 World Championship will bring considerable interest to both the category and the brand,” says Pierer. “With its history of 110 years the Husqvarna brand is highly known throughout the world of racing. The Moto3 stage will give a further boost to grow Husqvarna stronger than ever. We’re looking forward to see great competition next year.”
Niklas’ father, former racer Aki Ajo will manage the team. His Ajo Motorsport squad managed Sandro Cortese in his Moto3 Championship season in 2012 and won 125cc Grand Prix titles with Mike di Meglio and a young fellow named Marc Marquez. Di Meglio will make his MotoGP debut next season with Avintia Blusens on an Kawasaki-powered FTR while Marquez, of course, just won the MotoGP Championship as a rookie for Repsol Honda.
Kent will be returning to the Moto3 class after spending this past season racing in Moto2, finishing 22nd for Tech 3 on the Mistral 610. In 2012 however, Kent raced for the Red Bull KTM Ajo team in Moto3, finishing fourth overall with two wins, both coming in the last four races of the season.
Niklas Ajo will be racing his third season in Moto3 next year, after finishing 19th overall in 2012 and 14th in 2013.
“Danny Kent will be our official factory rider, with Niklas Ajo our official support rider,” says Pit Bierer, head of motorsports for both KTM and Husqvarna. “Both hugely talented young racers, we are looking forward to the start of Husqvarna’s new journey into Grand Prix Road Racing.”