The Kiefer Racing team has secured its future in the Moto2 World Championship after enough funds were raised to field former race winner Dominique Aegerter on a KTM.

The German squad’s future was plunged into doubt just before Christmas when a deal to sell the team to former bike race David Pickworth following the tragic death of team boss Stefan Kiefer during the Malaysian Grand Prix weekend fell through.

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New team manager Jochen Kiefer, brother to the late Stefan, has since been able to acquire funds from “long term sponsors”, while one-time Moto2 winner Aegerter brought onboard more personal backers to make a 2018 intermediate class campaign possible.

“First of all we would like to express our gratitude for the great sympathy for Stefan’s death,” Kiefer stated. It was truly overwhelming how many people remained close to us during that difficult time and many thanks to them all.

“2018 unfortunately started with another setback. The deal with David Pickworth, who was wanting to buy the team, has unfortunately fallen through.

“The negotiations and talks were delayed for a long time, but in the end Mr Pickworth had to call off the deal. It’s a pity; it would have been nice if we could have continued with two riders.”

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2018 was meant to see Aegerter joined by 2012 Moto3 world champion Sandro Cortese, but the current situation with the team has left the German seeking alterante plans for this season.

According to German publication Speedweek, it looks likely Cortese will join Belgian rider Loris Cresson at the Kallio Racing Yamaha team in the World Supersport Championship.

“We are very, very sorry for Sandro Cortese,” Kiefer added. We’ve already worked with Sandro, in 2015, and had a good time with him.

“The signs for a further successful collaboration with him were very positive, and we nevertheless wish him success in his future career.”