Red Bull KTM could sign Grand Prix of Latvia winner Glenn Coldenhoff as the sole team-mate for Tony Cairoli in the MXGP faction of the factory set-up for 2016. The 24-year-old Dutchman was informed last month that there would be no place for him with Suzuki next season and he has allegedly held talks with the Austrians since.
With Tommy Searle’s position in the factory team undecided and Ken De Dycker almost certain to leave (rumours of retirement for the Belgian have been circulating) then Coldenhoff has been one of the names connected as part of the defending champions’ set-up with Valentin Guillod also spoken about.
“I think that Glenn is a great rider and I can confirm that we are speaking to him because he said to me in Teutschenthal that he will not go on with his existing team,” commented KTM Sport Director Pit Beirer exclusively. “He has a nice personality and results are not always the number one priority [for building a team]…people should be able to fit well into the team. It would be attractive to work with him.”
Beirer also confirmed that Red Bull KTM are likely to field five athletes with three of those believed to be in MX2 with Jeffrey Herlings staying put after a disastrous 2015 campaign, Pauls Jonass having a second term in 2016 after an impressive debut year as a factory rider (and still in contention for the title) and Dutch teenager Davy Pootjes embarking on a first full attempt. MXGP will see Cairoli running with a team-mate but until the name is confirmed then there can be no say on whether the 350SX-F will also be under the awning. Cairoli has already publicly stated his desire to test and progress with the 450SX-F next year.
“It [the rider roster] is pretty much decided…but never frozen,” added Beirer. “If there is a crazy option then we might go for it but at the moment it looks like we will go with five riders in our factory structure. We have the staff, workshop and facilities so that we are not under pressure to decide on five or six riders.”