As is in a strange case such as this, politics and money are at issue.
The Italian Federation has instructed both Tony Cairoli and KTM, along with David Philippaerts and Yamaha, that they must wear the jerseys that the Italian Federation has determined, with the Federations sponsors in the primary positions located on the jersey. They have ‘negotiated’ with the riders and the teams for each that they would receive two ‘spots’ on each arm of the jersey for their own existing team sponsors.
Tony, KTM, David, and Yamaha have determined that they, and their teams, spend and receive an extraordinary amount of money to represent themselves and their sponsors to the fullest.
Tony, KTM, David, and Yamaha decided that it was not in their best interest, nor their teams and sponsors to ride in the most important single motocross event of the year with out representing them.
In turn, The Italian Federation has now stated that Tony and David are not part of the Italian team, because they will not wear the jerseys that the Federation has ‘negotiated’.
This is unfair to fans of motocross worldwide. We hope this gets resolved ASAP, so that fans around the world can see the very best riders in the world compete at this year’s Nations, and, both Tony and David have proven that they are two riders that undoubtedly should be representing Italy.
We are guessing we will hear more about this issue in the future.
Tony Cairoli at 2009 Motocross of Nations, racing for Italy.
David Philippaerts at last year’s Motocross of Nations in Italy, racing for Team Italy.