Joe Roberts Finds New Seat For 2021
Joe Roberts is set to join the Italtrans Racing Team for an assault on the 2021 Moto2 World Championship in a shocking move that will see him leave the American Racing Team.
The Californian has become one of the class’s leading names in 2020 while racing a Kalex chassis, claiming three pole positions in Qatar, the Czech Republic and France, as well as a podium finish at Brno.
His performances have attracted interest from the highly coveted Italtrans team, a squad currently fighting for the title with Enea Bastianini, who will step up to MotoGP with Ducati next year. Roberts will link up with Lorenzo Dalla Porta on Kalex machinery and aim to win races, and possibly have a shot at the world championship.
Italtrans is managed by Robertino Pietri, a former racer who used to compete in the USA. John Hopkins, Rider Coach for the American Racing Team, as well as Roberts’s personal manager, knows the Venezuelan Pietri well from his racing days. Those close to the team are adamant this is a good move for all concerned. It will allow Roberts to flourish in a new environment. Meanwhile, the team believes its primary job is to promote young American talent before they move on to the next stage of their career.
Last year Iker Lecuona scored podiums for them before moving up to MotoGP with Tech 3 KTM in 2020. Roberts’s move away is viewed in similar terms. The American Racing Team is confident they will sign another rider currently plying his trade in MotoAmerica for 2021 to replace the outgoing Roberts and ride alongside current teammate Marcos Ramirez. ~Neil Morrison