QMMF Racing Team is in hot contest for the Moto2 World Championship 2012: Elena Rossell from Valencia/Spain, the only woman in Grand Prix Racing, signed up to ride for the team of Qatar’s Motorcycle Federation. Whereas the 25-year-old approaches her first complete Grand Prix season as a learning experience, her 28-year-old team-mate Damian Cudlin from Australia will throw in years of experience on all kinds of racing bikes to ensure strong results from the very first race, which will be held on April 8th at Qatar.
“I am delighted with our new rider line-up. Everybody in the QMMF team is very motivated and we all look forward to a good start of the 2012 season”, said Nasser Khalifa Al Attiyah, President of the Qatar Motor and Motorcycle Federation. “We can expect a strong performance and good results from both our new riders and we want to thank Dorna, IRTA, DMM Motorsport and of course QMMF for their ongoing support. Elena Rossell is the first ever female rider in the Moto2 category, and her progress in world championship racing will not only create keen interest of the hardcore race fans, but will also be an inspiration for many other people in our modern society. Our development rider Damian Cudlin is a promising rider and we believe he will do a very good job for our team. With Moriwaki as a manufacturer, the QMMF team has a fantastic technical base. Together, we will strive to become competitive on the highest level!”
Elena, who grew up with motorcycles but who also practiced other extreme sports such as taekwondo and triathlon, started racing in 2002 and moved up to the Spanish Championship in the Supersport category in 2005. In 2008, she won the European Championship in the women’s class and in 2010 she started to compete in the Stock Extreme category of the Spanish Championship before making her Grand Prix debut with three Moto2 races in 2011.
“I am really happy! To be able to do a full Moto2 World Championship season is a dream coming true and I would like to thank QMMF for their trust in me”, said Elena. “Things are happening very fast. Three years ago I started in the Kawasaki Ninja Cup, two years ago I moved up to the Spanish Championship, last year I had my first wild card entries in Moto2 and now I am approaching my first full season in the World Championship – it’s unbelievable! Despite my rapid progress I know that this year in the QMMF team will be very difficult for me. Everything is new and my main job will be to learn. The start of the season will be especially hard, but I don’t mind because I always had to work very hard in my life to achieve things. I am ready for the challenge. I am really motivated, because I know my new team has great potential, they are very professional but also very kind. I had a shoulder injury last year, but I am fully recovered and I’m training very hard with supermotard and motocross bikes, in the gym, running, mountain biking and swimming, in order to be in best possible shape when the season starts.”
Living in Taree in the Australian countryside, Damian Cudlin started riding dirt bikes at a very young age and won three Australian Junior Dirt Track titles in a row before moving his attention to road racing. At age 17, he got his first “big bike” ride in the 1000 cc Formula Extreme class and later on scored promising results in the Endurance World Championship, with two overall third places in 2006 and 2007. But he had to wait until 2011 before getting his first chance of Grand Prix racing as a replacement rider in the Moto2 and later on in the MotoGP category. “To finally arrive on this level and ride the first Grand Prix races of my life was an incredible experience”, said Damian. “My entire career long, I tried to catch a permanent Grand Prix ride, but it was very difficult to find the right support. Now, all stars lined up the right way and I’m finally getting my chance in the GP championship. The QMMF team has a great structure and lots of potential. I will try to bring in my experience as a development rider, a job that I’ve done for several teams and manufacturers during the last years. This will hopefully help to give the team the right direction with the set-up and further development of the bike and I am sure we will work very well together. I know lots of guys in the team because my young brother Alex raced with them both in the Endurance and in the Qatar championships. We will have a great time together!”
The QMMF team will continue its successful partnership with Moriwaki racing, running the latest version of the highly competitive Moriwaki MD 600. “I haven’t tested this bike yet, but I am confident that we’ll have a very good package”, said Damian. “In 2010, Moriwaki won the Moto2 world championship with Toni Elias and since then, the bike has further improved. The potential is there and the fact that I have experience with a variety of other four-stroke machines will help to understand the strong and weak points of the bike. I am sure we will be able to fight for some good results!”