In an exciting turn of events for Aleix Espargaró, the—now—Aprilia rider and amateur YouTuber has acquired a one-of-a-kind possession for his private collection. The racer’s very own Suzuki GSX-RR from the 2016 MotoGP season is now part of his private collection. 

This development marks a significant milestone for Espargaró, who has been sharing glimpses of his life as a racing driver on his YouTube channel since earlier this year, offering fans an insider's perspective on his daily routines and granting them access to his impressive garage. 

Suzuki pulled some strings to save his 2016 GP bike from the crushers. Some bikes were saved for display at museums, but it appears that Espargaró was considered another exemption. As for the fate of the 2022 GSX-RR ridden by Alex Rins, fingers crossed that’s also saved. 

It’s worth noting that this particular GP bike holds sentimental value for Espargaró, as it’s the exact one he rode back in the 2016 GP season. Espargaró’s mechanic, Robert, loaded the GSX-RR into the motorhome of the Aprilia racer during a stopover in Milan. 

Overwhelmed with excitement, the 33-year-old Catalan exclaimed, "It's not a dream, it's real! Suzuki has actually given me the GSX-RR that I competed with in the 2016 MotoGP World Championship. I'm almost moved to tears; it's truly a goosebumps moment. It's incredible. Normally, it's impossible to obtain a Japanese MotoGP machine for personal ownership. I've always inquired about it, and the answer has consistently been no. However, when they retired from MotoGP, they contacted me and offered the bike that initiated the project as a token of gratitude. At first, I thought it was a joke, but after a year and a half of paperwork and contracts, the 2016 GSX-RR #41 is now in my possession." (translated)

The only alteration required was replacing the front fairing with the original one, excluding winglets. When Espargaró test-rode his old GSX-RR, he was astounded, stating, "I didn't remember it being so small—almost as narrow as a Moto2 Kalex. It's incredible how MotoGP bikes have evolved over the years. The 2016 Suzuki is remarkably beautiful, but undoubtedly, today's MotoGP bikes are much more competitive."

Expressing his gratitude, Espargaró extended his thanks to Suzuki, Sahara-san, Davide, and Roberto Brivio for making this extraordinary acquisition possible. The current Aprilia works driver beamed with delight as he shared, "It's a dream; I feel like a little kid. Seeing the bike again was an incredibly emotional experience because it symbolizes where it all began. Suzuki was the first manufacturer to believe in me and subsequently changed my life. It was through Suzuki that Aprilia noticed me, leading to victories and podium finishes... That's why this bike holds such a special place in my heart."

Espargaró competed for Suzuki in 2015 and 2016, securing an 11th-place finish in the World Championship on both occasions. While a shared podium remained elusive, he achieved a remarkable pole position at the 2015 Catalunya GP.

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