Anthony West Back With MZ for Moto2 in 2011
Anthony West will return to the MZ Racing Moto2 squad to team with German Max Neukirchner for the 2011 season.The 29-year-old Australian had a frustrating 2010 on the German bike in the inaugural Moto2 season, becoming increasingly more vocal as the year progressed. The MZ Moto2 chassis was too heavily based on a production model and was far too heavy to be competitive for most of the season. Much of the year was spent reducing weight, though the results never consistently improved. West had three top ten finishes with a best of seventh in the penultimate round in Portugal. His best qualifying mark was a fifth in the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix.Almost as important is the team’s new technical structure. When testing resumes next February, the technical side of MZ Racing will be run by Marco Nicotari and his company ProRide from Lucca, Italy.Team manager Peter Rubatto will be responsible for all of MZ’s Moto2 racing activities, heading the grand prix team and also taking on administrative responsibilities for a second Moto2 racing squad in the Spanish Championship. The racing department will use the data from the two championships to develop MZ’s unique steel tubular trellis frame, with the aim of supplying more riders with MZ technology. Given the dominance of Suter and Moriwaki, producing a competitive, cost-effective chassis will be a tall order.”Anthony battled his way through a very difficult first season with our bike, and he scored three top ten results for us,” MZ CEO and former 250cc GP rider Martin Wimmer said. “He also proved his incredible talent in wet conditions, and he is always a safe bet for a podium finish when it rains. He’s done a lot for us this year, and we are happy and excited about the continuation of our great working relationship. To have him race alongside with Max Neukirchner is a very promising combination. As we all know, Max has vast experience on different World Superbike factory machines, and his input will be a crucial factor in the further development of our bike. In the few first laps he has done on our bike, he impressed all of us with the amount of valuable information he was able to share.”West and Neukirchner will soon test a lightened 2011 chassis in Jerez, Spain, with Neukirchner doing follow-up tests in Almeria and Barcelona prior to the Dec. 1 testing ban.