Legendary manufacturer Lambretta is to return to world motorcycle racing after an absence of nearly 60 years.
The newly formed Lambretta Reparto Corse motorsport division will enter two Lambrettas in this year's MotoGP 125cc championship, with Italian Marco Ravaioli signed as the first rider.
"It's is a wonderful day for Lambretta and one we've been working toward for nearly two years," said Lambretta marketing director John Scully. "We're delighted to be back on the racetrack and to compete in such an exciting and expanding sport. "It'll be fun to compete with the big boys and see what happens.
"We're determined to do well and develop winning racing technology that can then be translated into our production machines that will again make Lambretta scooters the most innovative on the market."
Lambretta Reparto Corse was formed out of the ashes of the old Loncin squad, and will be run by the same team from premises in Bologna, Italy, with Nicola Casadei as team boss. The bike itself will use a brand-new engine and frame, however.
The Lambretta brand last competed in world championship motorcycle racing between 1950 and 1953, although its scooters were still successfully raced into the 1990s. Its return to the championship comes as Lambretta begins production on its first brand-new scooter range since 1970.