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Crutchlow Set for 2019 | MOTOGP | SPORT

While his compatriots Bradley Smith and Scott Redding appear to be headed out of the championship, top British rider Cal Crutchlow had the opposite news at his home GP, after his HRC contract with the LCR team was extended in the previous week for another year.

Already signed up for 2019, HRC added another year to keep him going until 2020. He joined the independent LCR team, owned and run by former rider Lucio Cecchinello, in 2015 after three years on a satellite Yamaha; and has enjoyed his best results on the RC213V. Victory in this year’s Argentine GP was his third win, after two last year.

After four years, “I’ll be with the team for another three. It’s good news – the longest I’ve been with any team,” he said.

He was “by far the highest-paid satellite-team rider, but I don’t think I am slowing down as a rider, and I wanted to stay with Honda.” He added: “I think it will be my last contract, but then I said that when I signed previously at the end of 2017.”

His comments about both the team and HRC, who contracted him directly for 2018 and 2019, have always been loyally positive.

His factory status also acknowledges his value as a test and development rider. In the confirmation statement, HRC president Yoshishige Nomura said: “By hard work and getting many good results he has contributed a lot to Honda … and always gives us very useful feedback for the evolution of the RC213V.”

By Michael Scott