Doha, 17 March 2018. Aspire Academy has entered into partnership with Losail Circuit Sports Club (LCSC) and Dorna Sports, the commercial rights holder for the MotoGP to run Qatar Motorsport Academy in an effort to find and nature young riders in the country. The announcement was made at press conference in the presence of Minister of Culture and Sports of Qatar, HE Salah bin Ghanem bin Nasser al-Ali, Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta, LCSC Vice President and General Manager Khalid Al Remaihi, Aspire Academy Director General, Ivan Bravo, QMMF President Abdulrahman al-Mannai and Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM) President Vito Ippolito.
The press conference was held on the sidelines of the MotoGP Grand Prix of Qatar at the Losail International Circuit on Friday 16th March. LCSC Vice President and General Manager Khalid Al Remaihi said the academy will come into effect in October 2018. “LCSC will work with Dorna Sports, the commercial rights holder for the MotoGP, and Qatar’s Aspire Academy to develop the Qatar Motorsport Academy which will be the Launchpad for youngsters to get into the sport. We aim to start with 6 to 14-year-old kids into the academy, which includes locals, people of different nationalities living in Qatar and also those who are living around us in the region and in Dorna Sports and Aspire Academy we have the experts in the field of what we are seeking to accomplish and we consider them as ideal partners. What we found out is we need to have an alliance with right partners. This is why Losail Club has tied up with Dorna Sports, who with their vast experience and know-how of the motorcycling racing will create programmes for younger generations that will be their stepping stone into MotoGP. And also Aspire Academy is an icon in sports training, education and excellence in sport. To have that kind of support in Qatar is a great value to us,” Al Remaihi said.
LCSC Vice President and General Manager Khalid Al Remaihi paid tribute to QMMF and its’ President Abdulrahman Al Mannai for the support. “The input and cooperation of local federation QMMF led by Mr Abdulrahman al-Mannai and his team is of tremendous help and essential for what we want to achieve. Hopefully in near future, we will get to see Qatari rider or someone living in Qatar or someone from the region in the MotoGP class,” concluded Al Remaihi.
Aspire Academy Director General, General Director, Ivan Bravo said he was pleased that two years of planning and preparation was about to be implemented with start of the academy in October this year, “At Aspire Academy one of our goals is to identify sports that we believe Qatar has chances of excelling at and compete favourably at the very top and we see how brave and daring the Qataris are in cars and on bikes. This partnership allows these qualities and abilities to be channeled into organized motorsports and afford Qatari youngsters opportunities to work their way to the highest levels of motorsport. Our part will be what Aspire Academy really does. Once you have base of the pyramid - when you have a lot of kids maybe starting to ride or getting exposed to the sport - it is then Dorna’s technical expertise will tell us ‘here is this kid with special talents or potential’. That includes their physical or psychological conditioning or preparation. Everything that comes around in sports science, we will look after those aspects. Except for the coaching and training, the rest will be handled by us.”
Meanwhile Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta said, “Today is a very important day for motorsport in Qatar. Dorna has created systems around the world to reach young riders the right techniques. We have given them good education. All of this helped us build a team of people who could go on to show the young people the possibilities of becoming top riders. Two years ago, when we visited Aspire Academy - which I must say is an incredible place to train and educate young kids - I saw what kind of work was going on. We talked if something could be done about young riders with their help. Then we thought let’s have LCSC, the QMMF, Aspire Academy and Dorna to create possibilities about creating an academy,” Ezpeleta said. “I have been told the academy will be opened for everybody. This will be a new motorsport family. Qatar will be the first country in the world to do something like this at the national level. It is very important for the region as well. For us, it is a very exciting project. Right now we have the required experience to push this on. This is even bigger of a project than we thought of initially. We will do everything in our power to help talented riders get to Moto 3 and beyond,” the Dorna Sports CEO said during the press conference.
QMMF President Al Mannai said: “The launch of this academy will assist us and make our goals realistic. In Dorna and Aspire Academy, we believe we have the perfect combination of experts required for this undertaking. A sporting project of this magnitude needs to be comprehensive and that is what we intend to make of this one. As President of QMMF, I am pleased and fully support this initiative.”