The Suzuki Europe MX2 team was a passive observer at the Grand Prix of Italy for the final round of the FIM Motocross World Championship last weekend with rider Valentin Teillet on the injury-list.
But the team carried a presence in the sweltering paddock at Fermo, especially with regards to exciting plans for 2012:
The German crew hope to soon announce some important and interesting developments for the future of the European MX2 racing programme based around the RM and RM-Z250 machines and Team Manager Thomas Ramsbacher was on-hand to offer some perspective on the status of racing operations as they currently stand.
How can you evaluate 2011?
"If you have had a season like ours then you can only look for the future! We have to make an evaluation and see if we made any mistakes and, like any rider, learn from it. We have to work towards being competitive again in 2012. Valentin only rode six from 15 Grands Prix and from this ratio you cannot expect to be at the top, but this is a matter of bad luck for the kid and the team."
What is your vision for 2012 and beyond?
"For us the main thing - as we have always done - is look towards what we can do for the young riders. When Teillet was injured this year we had the chance to jump in with a rider who was 22 or 23 from another brand but that was something we didn't want to do. Our priority was to give the opportunity of a factory bike to some Suzuki kids to see their possibilities and learn about how they handle that type of situation. We took on Simone Zecchina and were surprised. He was quite unknown in Italy but did a good job, the same as Jeremy Seewer last weekend in Gaildorf. These kids are cool and they are in Championships on a Suzuki, so it was positive to continue a progression and show them the level they can reach."
How do you see the presence of the team next year? Will there be a bigger spread in different series?
"From my side I have been building up young kids since we started the team. The most well-known is of course Ken Roczen but we also guided the likes of Clement Desalle for four years, Xavier Boog and Arnaud Tonus. We picked up these guys as kids and we were able to mutually progress together. I like the idea of developing talent with the excellent opportunities we have, especially in the link with GRP (Geboers Racing Promotion) and Jens Johansson and his experience, I believe we can continue doing our work and this means having a presence in the important series we see around now; like the two-stroke championship, the MX2 European series and then the flagship factory-backed RM-Z250 in the MX2 Grands Prix."