Lorenzo Dalla Porta has signed to be one of Mahindra’s factory riders for the 2017 season. His contract sees him take up one place in the highly successful Mahindra Aspar Team aboard an MGP3O. The deal also includes an option for the 2018 season, both parties eager to begin their collaboration.
Dalla Porta has already made 11 Grand Prix starts with a best finish of eighth place, achieved at the British GP in 2015. Currently leading the prestigious FIM CEV Repsol Moto3 Junior World Championship, Dalla Porta had offers from a number of teams but has chosen to begin his first full-time World Championship campaign with Mahindra.
Born in Prato, Italy on the 22nd of June 1997, Dalla Porta’s first big success came in 2012 when he took the 125cc crown in the Italian Championship. In 2015 he made his way over to Spain and began to hone his skill in the CEV championship, stepping onto the World Championship stage for the final half of year and impressing immediately.
In 2016 Dalla Porta began the year as the favourite for the Moto3 Junior World Championship title and didn’t disappoint. From the first five rounds he took four pole positions and four wins, finishing off the podium just once. He begins the second half of the season not only with 36 point lead, but also his World Championship future secure.
Both Dalla Porta and the MGP3O have proven themselves capable of battling at the front in the World Championship and 2017 is already shaping up to be an exciting year.
Lorenzo Dalla Porta: “It’s a great honour for me to be a part of a major company like Mahindra. I know with them I will be a proper factory rider and to be inside a team with as strong a history as Aspar is wonderful. You need these things in a championship as hard as the Moto3 World Championship. We know that the bike can fight and can win; Pecco has shown what the MGP3O can do. When I was riding in Assen I was in the same group as him and you could see the bike was quick! I’m excited to get on the bike but right now I’m focussing on the CEV championship, I want to join Mahindra as a champion and keep winning once I arrive.”
Mufaddal Choonia, CEO Mahindra Racing: “Lorenzo Dalla Porta has shown himself to be a very strong rider with his rides in the World Championship and his title challenge in the CEV. It’s a thrilling prospect to have a potential Junior World Champion riding a Mahindra next year. We have already started working on the 2017 bike and with Dalla Porta on board we’re looking forward to another great year with Aspar,our partnership continuing to go from strength to strength. Our results have improved each year together and we’re confident 2017 will continue this pattern.”
Jorge Martínez, CEO Aspar Team: “Dalla Porta is a young rider who last year has already had his first foray in the World Championship. He has significant experience and I think he has grown a lot, going well and he is now leading the Moto3 Junior World Championship. He has the potential to do great things with Mahindra Aspar Team. I hope that we keep developing and staying up to date, to continue the trend and be able to count on a motorcycle, a rider and a competitive team to make great results next year.”
In 2016, Mahindra Racing is competing as a constructor in its fifth year in the Moto3™ class of MotoGP™ and remains the only Indian constructor in the series, having first participated in 2011. Mahindra Racing supplies the Mahindra MGP3O single-cylinder, 4-stroke, 250cc motorcycle to the factory Aspar Mahindra Team and three customer teams. Mahindra also supplies an official Peugeot Motocycles derivative of the MGP3O to the factory Peugeot MC Saxoprint Team.
The 2016 Mahindra Racing line-up includes: Aspar Mahindra Team Moto3 – Jorge Martin (SPA), Francesco Bagnaia (ITA); Peugeot MC Saxoprint – Alexis Masbou (FRA), John Mcphee (GB); Platinum Bay Real Estate –Danny Webb (GB), Darryn Binder (RSA); CIP-Unicom Starker- Fabio Spiranelli (ITA), Tatsuki Suzuki (JPN); 3570 Team Italia – Stefano Valtulini (ITA), Lorenzo Petrarca (ITA).
Mahindra Racing made history in the 2013 Malaysian Grand Prix taking the first-ever podium for an Indian constructor. The MGP3O recorded top-five finishes in 10 of the 17 rounds in 2013 as well as a pole position, three circuit lap records and third in the constructors’ rankings. The 2014 season saw a further three podium finishes for the Indian motorcycle, including second place at the Sachsenring. In 2015, the Mahindra regularly fought at the front of the ultra-competitive Moto3™ class and recorded a podium finish at Le Mans.
2016 got off to a strong start for Mahindra Racing with Aspar Mahindra Team Moto3 rider Francesco (Pecco) Bagnaia securing a third place podium finish at the opening round in Qatar.
As well as its commitment in the World Championship, Mahindra continues to supply MGP3O machines to Team Aspar to compete in World Championship feeder series, the FIM CEV Repsol Moto3 Junior World Championship in 2016.
Mahindra’s bold decision to take on the world’s best at the highest level of motorcycle racing has won the team a number of prestigious awards in India, including: the NDTV Car and Bike Awards – ‘Mobil 1 Motorsport Award of the Year’, 2012 and 2013; the Bike India Magazine – ‘Motorsport Award’, 2013; and ‘ZigWheels Motorsport Award of the Year’, 2012. Mahindra also won ‘Racing Bike of the Year’ at the Zeeignition Auto Awards, 2016.