In the last few hours, there’s been a lot of talk about who will replace Davide Brivio at the helm of the Suzuki Ecstar team, with possible names including Davide Tardozzi, who has a contract with Ducati until 2022, and Livio Suppo, who is yet to be contacted by anyone at Suzuki. There's also Manuel Cazeaux, the engineer responsible for Alex Rins’ bike.
We have recently received confirmation of a name that no one had considered until now, but who is on the list of possible candidates to fill the vacant post following Brivio’s unexpected departure. He tops the list in fact. His name is Pablo Nieto, son of 12+1 time champion Angel Nieto and manager of Valentino Rossi’s teams in Moto3 and Moto2 since 2015. A structure with which he has won world titles with both Franco Morbidelli and Pecco Bagnaia.
Pablo’s profile marries well with that of the outgoing Brivio, as both are calm and reasonable with a simple but decisive management style: “Am I interested in the idea? Of course… But it’s a complicated situation” comments Pablo after having confirmed he’s on the list. Replacing the man who has led the Suzuki project since the manufacturer’s return to MotoGP in 2015 and scored the world title with one of the smallest budgets in the paddock, would be no mean feat.
It’s impossible to do more, the most one could hope for is to match that performance. Comparisons would be inevitable, but they don’t worry Pablo. In any case, the final word lies with Suzuki Japan, and they cannot afford to delay their decision, considering the pre-season is set to start a month from now. And the missing figure is none other than the ship’s captain.
Translated by Heather Watson