Teenagers from around the world know that the best way of getting a start in Grand Prix motorcycle racing is by entering the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup. Since its inception in 2007 it has grown into one of the most thrilling 2 wheel spectacles in the world.
The Rookies Cup has released new stars into the world of Grand Prix racing, GP winners and a new generation who will compete through the Moto3, Moto2 and MotoGP classes. Every year the level of competition has climbed and this year's intake are set to raise the bar yet again for the 9th running of the Cup.
Starting at the Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez on May 2nd and 3rd the series takes a broad sweep around the classic Grand Prix circuits of Europe including the usual run through the Netherlands, Germany, the Czech Republic, Great Britain and San Marino before ending the year back in Spain again with the Grand Prix of Aragon on September 26th and 27th.
This is the third season with the Moto3 specification KTM RC 250 R 4-stroke as we switched in 2013 from the 2-stroke KTM RC 125 that had powered the Rookies for the first 6 seasons.
Just as the RC 125 was a close brother to the 125cc GP machines raced by the KTM factory so successfully, the RC 250 R is a reflection of the factory KTM Moto3 machine. It is the start of another great lineage, the 2012 factory KTM won the 2012 Moto3 World Championship in the hands of Sandro Cortese and in 2013 KTMs filled the top four places.
For the 24 Rookies the first chance to ride the KTMs in 2015 comes at the preseason test held in Jerez with three days on track, March 31st , April 1st and 3rd. 14 Nations are represented from around the globe, from Japan to Australia and Argentina and across Europe from Spain to the Czech Republic.
The Grand Prix paddock watches the intense action of the Rookies races picking out future stars and the Rookies themselves study their Grand Prix heroes in action looking for tips and inspiration. They get both from the factory KTM team with 2013 Rookies Cup champion Karel Hanika looking for Moto3 glory this season alongside fellow ex Rookies Brad Binder and Miguel Oliveira.