Another piece of the 2023 MotoGP rider line up has fallen into place. On Sunday morning, Gresini announced that they have signed Alex Marquez to race alongside Fabio Di Giannantonio for next year.
The signing did not come as a surprise. Rumors had been circulating all weekend that the younger Marquez brother was close to a deal with Gresini, and Di Giannantonio has show great progress in the last few races, including taking pole at his home race in Mugello.
The second seat at Gresini became available after initial talks with Miguel Oliveira failed to progress. That opened the way for Alex Marquez, who had in turn fallen out of favor with LCR Honda. Marquez' switch to Gresini opens the door for Alex Rins to sign with LCR, while Oliveira is likely to end up at the RNF Aprilia squad.
For the moment, much of this is still speculation, but the Gresini announcement is likely to be the catalyst for a slew of other deals. With the summer break nearly upon us, more announcements could be imminent.
The press release from Gresini appears below:
HERE IS GRESINI MOTOGP’S LINE UP FOR 2023
FABIO IS CONFIRMED; MARQUEZ TO JOIN THE SQUAD
Our first official news for 2023 is here: Team Gresini MotoGP have selected Alex Marquez to replace Enea Bastianini – who will race a factory-spec Ducati machine starting next year. The Faenza-based squad looks once again at the wealth of talent from Spain, a country that always had strong ties and success with the team: from Gibernau to Martin, but also Toni Elias, Alvaro Bautista and Emilio Alzamora, who currently manages rider #73.
Born in Cervera, Alex Marquez has a top-level CV: he was Moto3 and Moto2 World Champion in 2014 and 2019, respectively, with a tally of 40 podiums that include 12 race wins – and two second places in the premier class back in 2020. The experienced 26-year-old will tackle his fourth season in the series, the first one with Ducati machinery.
Alongside the Spaniard will be Fabio Di Giannantonio, who is currently having great success tackling his rookie MotoGP season with Gresini. The Italian, who despite his young age has a long history with the squad, is among the contenders for Rookie of the Year 2022. He already has a pole position in the premier class and an eighth place as a best result.
#73 – ALEX MARQUEZ
“I’m really happy to announce that I’ll be joining Team Gresini MotoGP, and I’m also very excited to be starting this new adventure: it was crucial for me to change in order to recover the same type of motivation I had when I first joined this class. This was the best option for me, with a team that helped writing the history of this championship. I would like to thank Nadia, Carlo and all the GR staff for believing in me. I still have half a season left to do my best before starting 2023 with top motivation.”
#49 – FABIO DI GIANNANTONIO
“I’m really happy to extend my partnership with this team, which is like a family to me. It’s great because we’ll continue on this learning curve, and we’ll be doing so with a Ducati – and that makes me very happy. Continuity is key in MotoGP in order to be able to work on myself to be the best possible. We have been working on this contract extension for a little while, and now we can finally announce it. Obviously the goals will be higher: we’ll be using this second part of the season to improve our results and then next year I really want to make that step up.”
NADIA PADOVANI GRESINI – TEAM OWNER
“I’m really happy with this new project. First of all we’re confirming our continuation with Fabio Di Giannantonio. He has already shown his talent this year, as he has been improving race after race, and I’m sure that he’ll keep getting more competitive. We were looking to put a more experienced rider alongside him, and I think Alex Marquez is the perfect one for our team. His CV speaks for itself: we think he has great potential and that the Desmosedici machine may be the perfect companion on his new journey. Welcome to the family, Alex!”