World Champions they may be but there was a venerable feeling of excitement about the new-look SKY Racing Team VR46 as the 2019 incarnation of the Italian squad was unveiled live on TV last week.
Arguably ‘the’ premier outfit for Italian road race talent boasts names and technology that will be punching their way through the field in both the Moto2 and Moto3 classes as the season looms ever closer. Maiden Grand Prix winner Luca Marini is expected to rein-in more silverware in the nineteen round campaign while Nicolo Bulega is a tantalising prospect in the intermediate division: the 19 year old’s tall and languid frame better suited to the Kalex framed motorcycle compared to some frustrating years in Moto3.
Both athletes will swing their legs over the Triumph-engined Moto2 bikes; the first time the competition has relied on different ‘horses’ since the inception of the equal and tight contest in 2010. In 2018 SKY Racing Team VR46 won exactly half of the Moto2 Grands Prix thanks to Marini and outgoing world champ Pecco Bagnaia (who makes his debut on the MotoGP grid).