June 25 (Reuters) – Experienced Italian MotoGP rider Danilo Petrucci will leave Ducati and race for the non-factory Tech3 KTM team in 2021, the Austrian manufacturer announced on Thursday.
The departure was expected, with Ducati having already signed Australian Jack Miller for next year and Andrea Dovizioso set to stay.
Petrucci, 29, will partner young Spaniard Iker Lecuona at Tech3, with Portuguese rider Miguel Oliveira moving up from the satellite outfit to the factory KTM team alongside South African Brad Binder.
Binder, 24, and Oliveira, 25, were team mates in the junior Moto2 and Moto3 categories.
“Brad and Miguel have a productive working relationship and have shown the talent and the desire to win races through all stages of grand prix,” said KTM boss Pit Beirer.
“We believe they have the determination necessary to push our MotoGP project forward.
“The same goes for Red Bull KTM Tech3 where we’re happy to bring Danilo into the family.”
Pol Espargaro will leave the KTM factory team to make way for Oliveira. The Spaniard is widely expected to move to Repsol Honda alongside Marc Marquez in place of the reigning world champion’s brother Alex.
Alex Marquez, the Moto2 champion who has yet to race in the top category, has been tipped for a move to the non-works LCR Honda team. (Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Toby Davis)