Suzuki Ecstar has announced a new partnership with noted exhaust company Akrapovic in a bid to improve the performance of the team’s race bikes in the current and succeeding MotoGP seasons. The tie-up between the two companies will take effect immediately so be on the look out for Akrapovic’s MotoGP exhausts on the two Suzuki GSX-RR bikes that will line up on the grid at the Indianapolis Grand Prix.

The collaboration between Suzuki and Akrapovic doesn’t come as a surprise to those who know the shared history the two companies have. Even though it hasn’t reached the levels of MotoGP until now, both Suzuki and Akrapovic have worked together in the past and his familiarity could breed for another long-standing relationship moving forward.

For now, Akravpovic’s main objective is to help Suzuki Ecstar close out its first season in MotoGP since 2011 on a positive note. Given the circumstances of this season being its first in four years, the team has already yielded impressive results, scrapping up a good chunk of points thanks largely to the efforts of riders Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Vinales.

Having the Slovenian exhaust specialist in the fold could give Suzuki Ecstar the advantage it needs to string together a number of quality performances to close out the season with a bang. It’s not that hard to imagine such a scenario given how good Espargaro and Vinales have been. Who knows, maybe a podium finish might even be in the cards? Vinales, in particular, has already come close once, finishing sixth at the Catalunya Grand Prix back in June 14, 2015.

Akrapovic could be the missing piece that puts Suzuki over the hump and create a lot of momentum as the team slowly marches its way back into the upper echelon of MotoGP.

Continue reading to read more about Suzuki’s new MotoGP partnership with Akrapovic.

Why it matters

If Suzuka Ecstar wants to end the 2015 MotoGP on a high note, this partnership with Akrapovic came at the right time. Everyone knows that the team’s first year back in MotoGP wasn’t going to end with a championship. Like Aprilia, Suzuki is spending this season to gauge its place in the MotoGP hierarchy. Unlike Aprilia, Suzuki has actually produced in a lot of the races. It’s two riders have even amassed enough points to sit 10th (Vinales) and 12th (Espargaro) in the championship points table.

The team is in its proper place if it thinks it can make some noise in the second half of the season. That’s why having Akrapovic in the fold could pay off handsomely if Vinales and Espargaro can improve their performances from the first half of the season.

This partnership could also pay off in the long term as Suzuki continues to develop its new platform for the 2016 MotoGP season. The shared history between the two means that each side knows what the other can bring to the table. There’s a familiarity there that you can’t just conjure up on a whim.

Personally, I think this partnership could be one of the most unheralded storylines as we head into the final stretches of the season. I’m sure everyone’s going to be talking about the championship race as they should. But if you’re looking for a team that can make the most gains in the final races of the year, look no further than Suzuki Ecstar.

Press Release

The return to racing after the summer break will see Team SUZUKI ECSTAR benefit with a new Technical Partner in renowned exhaust systems producer Akrapovic.

The partnership will begin at the forthcoming GP of Indianapolis, where the two GSX-RRs ridden by Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Viñales will be equipped with the first incarnation of a new exhaust system that will be constantly developed in future races.

The relationship between Suzuki and Akrapovic is not new in MotoGP™ racing history, as the two brands have already worked together in the past.

Toshiyuki Yamada – Group Manager, Motorcycle Race Group:

“We are happy to have on our side such an important partner as Akrapovic. They have a long winning history in racing and their technological knowledge is state-of-the-art in the motorcycle industry. We were looking for a partner that could share with us the ambitious project that we started last year with our comeback in MotoGP™ and I believe that they can bring fresh and new input to our development path. It is good to have this partner, back as we have already worked side-by-side with them and we know what they are capable of. At this stage we are facing a complex development project that is made-up of many different aspects that require maximum effort; it is important for us to have capable partners that can support us with performance improvements but also share our ambition in racing.”

Uroš Rosa, PhD – CEO Akrapovic d.d.:

“We are delighted to be entering into this new partnership with Suzuki, as it embarks on its latest chapter in Grand Prix racing. It does feel like renewing acquaintances with old friends, as we have previously worked alongside the Japanese company in MotoGP. This is a big challenge for all concerned, but it is certainly one that Akrapovic is pleased to be involved with, because it gives us another chance to perform on the biggest two-wheel stage in the world, especially with a race-bike that is very much in development mode. Suzuki is already setting high-standards with the new bike in 2015. They are challenging towards the front of the pack, and we are convinced we can bring increased performance to the Suzuki GSX-RR with our advanced exhaust system technology, to help push Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Viñales on to greater success with Team SUZUKI ECSTAR.”

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