JGRMX Suzuki SHUTS DOWN factory race team

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The industry has been dealt another major blow as JGRMX Yoshimura Suzuki Factory Racing will shut down its race team following 13 years in the sport.

It comes just a month after Factory Connection Honda was forced to close its doors after being unable to secure a replacing title sponsor for outgoing partner Geico.

The combination of the two team’s exiting motocross and supercross means just under 10 highly regarded seats won’t be made available for the 2021 season, however we can find a positive in the expanded line-ups of Star Yamaha, GASGAS, and the expected announcements from Honda HRC and Red Bull KTM.

JGRMX, which is operated by Nascar giant Joe Gibbs Racing, entered the sport in 2008 as an independent squad, before going onto to secure factory support from Yamaha before transitioning to Suzuki in 2017.

The team hosted some of the biggest names in the sport, including a short tenure with James Stewart and Chad Reed, and while providing opportunities to many capable riders, injuries seemed to always prevent them from reaching success.

JGRMX has also been pivotal in bringing outside industry sponsors into the sport, although in recent years it has seemingly struggled to secure the support to cement its future.

The JGR team has been racing year to year over the last few seasons, with both sponsor support and the manufacturer backing from Suzuki always coming into question.

It’s what has ultimately prompted the outfit to close its doors after four years of being the Suzuki factory operation in America, where it’s understood a lack of support from the brand and challenges in gaining a major title sponsor led them to their closure.

Suzuki has distanced itself from motocross and supercross racing globally since 2018, withdrawing its support from all off-road competition aside from AMA Motocross and Supercross.

It’s believed a deadline was set earlier this week which would indicate if they will continue for another season, however it’s understood JGR management endeavoured to secure what they could right down to the very end before being forced to accept their run as a race team was over.

As it stands, HEP Suzuki will be the sole Suzuki-supported squad for 2021, although it’s not clear if their support will be elevated to an increased factory level.

The JGRMX closure puts Alex Martin and Fredrik Noren without a ride for the upcoming season, while Joey Savatgy was always exiting the team regardless of their future.

Who has been your favourite JGRMX rider over their 13-year involvement in the sport? Let me know in the comments below.
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