Red Bull KTM Ajo have already walked the top of the Moto3 podium on more than one occasion in 2023 to-date and are targeting more distinction next year with a KTM GP Academy rider roster of Jose Antonio Rueda and rookie Xabi Zurutuza.
Aki Ajo’s crew have used their long-established Red Bull KTM Moto3 program to not only bring Grand Prix podium finishes, wins and championships to the brand but also develop the brightest talents from feeder series like the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup, FIM JuniorGP and the Northern Talent Cup for the next stages of their careers at the highest level.
Red Bull KTM Ajo’s preparation and education of young prospects as well as their custody of KTM’s RC4 motorcycle have created consistently lofty standards. Their team history since the invention of the Moto3 class in 2012 (and even further back with KTM’s 2-stroke technology) involves a glittering list of MotoGP names and athletes that have gone on to major success.
In 2023 Deniz Öncü has claimed race wins and is vying for the team’s fourth Moto3 title. Alongside the Turk, Jose Antonio Rueda has been learning the demands of Moto3. The Spaniard, and former FIM JuniorGP and Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup champion, has been the picture of consistency with eight top ten finishes in twelve rounds, a maiden podium appearance at the Catalan Grand Prix and holds 8th spot in the current Moto3 standings.
The 17-year-old from Sevilla has been progressing with promise but will be the spearhead for the 2024 Moto3 campaign, as well as the reference for another red-hot rookie in the form of Zurutuza. The Basque comes into the squad - and the category - having taken two victories in the 2023 FIM JuniorGP series and is fast becoming one of the standout figures on the European scene.
Jose Antonio Rueda: "I am very happy to continue with the team next year. This season we are making a lot of progress and I have adapted well to the team and Aki's working methodology. We are very motivated to continue doing well and to move a little further forward, fighting more for good results. Our goal is to be at the front and consolidate all the progress we are making.”
Xabi Zurutuza: "I am very happy to be part of this great family. Red Bull KTM Ajo are a team that I have followed since I was little. Making my debut in the World Championship is every rider's dream and I have the opportunity to do it with KTM and Aki Ajo's team. I can't wait to start working, improve and have a good feeling with the team. The goal is to go race-by-race and enjoy myself, which is the important thing."
Aki Ajo, Team Prinicpal: "Moto3 has been really enjoyable for us this year so far, as we have a combination of Deniz's extensive experience in the class and Jose Antonio as a rookie rider. They are working really well, both the riders and the whole team in general. I feel that we have really improved all the time during the season. Of course, for us it is always important to develop our riders for the next step and it's part of the job. We are really happy to have this pair of riders for next season, as they are part of a young generation with a lot of enthusiasm and good results in smaller categories. Jose Antonio Rueda and Xabi Zurutuza will be a dynamic duo for 2024."