AUSTIN (KXAN) - Wednesday, Circuit of The Americas announced that the world's premier motorcycle racing World Championship, MotoGP™, will join its roster of racing events next spring with the three-day series set for April 19-21 at the purpose-built Grand Prix venue.
With the addition of the MotoGP series, the new circuit will be the first North American racing venue to host both two-and four-wheeled World Championship events in one year's time.
MotoGP, the pinnacle of all motorcycle World Championships, consists of 18 races in 13 countries on four continents with pan-global television coverage.
Nine nationalities of the world's most skilled riders, including current U.S. riders Colin Edwards, Ben Spies and 2006 MotoGP World Champion Nicky Hayden, compete with motorcycles produced by Ducati, Yamaha and Honda, as well as the new CRT regulation machines from FTR, Suter and Aprilia.
The series traditionally holds three races, including Moto2 and Moto3 competitions, during each event for various classes of motorcycles based on engine size.
"We are excited to be working with Circuit of The Americas to expand our programming in the United States and bring our series to an exceptional new Grand Prix facility in Texas," said Carmelo Ezpeleta, chief executive officer for Dorna Sports, commercial rights holder for the MotoGP series. "We see tremendous opportunities to market MotoGP and grow its fan base through this agreement and know Circuit of The Americas is the right promoter to help us achieve that goal."
"The Circuit of The Americas team is delighted to introduce yet another world-renowned racing series to our 2013 event calendar—one we know will be hugely popular with fans coming to experience MotoGP for the first time at our state-of-the-art sports and entertainment complex in Austin," said Steve Sexton, president of CoTA. "MotoGP has a worldwide fan base with more than two million followers watching races in person each year. We're confident it will be a great addition to our programming and draw tens of thousands of people to Central Texas, creating yet another major event with significant economic impact for our region. We want to extend our thanks to the Austin Sports Commission for its help in securing yet another first-class event for our city and for helping us become the first U.S. racing venue to host two World Championship motorsport events."
MotoGP's reach extends to more than 200 countries and territories that receive live or same-day delayed broadcasts of the MotoGP events, with the coverage delivered to more than 337 million households worldwide.
MotoGP 2006 World Champion Nicky Hayden, who hails from Kentucky, rides for the Ducati Factory Team and said he's eager to try out the new Austin circuit.
"It's great for riders and fans to have another MotoGP event in the United States, and Circuit of The Americas will give us a chance to expose more of our homegrown fan base to MotoGP in an up-close-and-personal way," Hayden noted. "I love competing at new, fresh tracks and am really looking forward to racing at the Austin circuit."
Texan Colin Edwards races for the NGM Mobile Forward Racing team and their CRT project. The former World Superbike Champion said a MotoGP race at a new circuit just two hours from his home in Conroe, Texas, means he can actually "drive to work" for a change.
"Adding a race to the U.S. schedule makes a statement that MotoGP is working to expand it influence on American soil. The best way to grow our sport is to add races, and with events on the East and West Coasts—and now one in Middle America—it's the perfect opportunity for more fans to see us in action. Plus, my family is really looking forward to jumping in a pick-up truck and driving up to Austin to see me compete," said Edwards.
Rider Ben Spies, from Longview, Texas, is also excited about the 2013 schedule.
"Who wouldn't be excited to have a MotoGP race in their home state?" Spies said. "I hope all of my CMRA, WERA and AMA racing friends and family storm the track. It will be so easy for me to cruise down to Circuit of The Americas from my house in Dallas."
Tickets for the MotoGP event at Circuit of The Americas go on sale Oct. 16, will range in price from $133 to $199. They will be available through Ticketmaster.
Patrons with Circuit of The Americas Personal Seat Licenses will receive price discounts on MotoGP tickets. For more information, visit www.CircuitofTheAmericas.com/tickets .
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