Alessandro ‘Sandro’ Cortese clinched the inaugural Moto3 championship with two races left in the season. Cortese was born in Ochsenhausen, Germany 22 years ago from an Italian father and German mother and is the first German rider to take a GP title in the entry class after almost twenty years.
Despite his young age Cortese is a veteran rider with 131 races to his name and last year was on the podium several times, but this season he matured into a winning rider with the official factory KTM M32 by taking four victories and 10 podiums (his worst results were two sixth places at Le Mans and Motegi).
The German rider started riding minimotos and became the National and European champion and later debuted in the 125cc class of the IDM championship where he finished 4th in the series and then switched to Dirk Raudies team, and in a strange sort of fate Raudies was also the last German to win the 125cc World title back in 1993. Cortese finished only 10th that season racing against riders that we already know Stefan Bradl, Randy Krummenacher, Dominique Aegerter, and Thomas Luthi who occasionally took a wildcard entry.
Thanks to Raudies and sponsor Bos, Cortese was able to debut in 2005 in the 125cc GP class with the Kiefer-Bos-Castrol Honda team and finished 26th and in 2006, he switched to the Elit – Caffè Latte Honda team and was team mate to 125cc World Champion Thomas Lüthi finishing 17th in the standings and in 2007 and 2008 stayed with the same team, but they were rebranded Emmi – Caffè Latte and switching to Aprilia machinery, here Cortese finished 14th and 8th respectively.
In 2009 and 2010 he rode for Ajo Motorsport where he concluded the two seasons in 6th and 7th, before taking a ride the following season with Racing Team Germany and it was his breakthrough year as he took 2 wins and finishing fourth overall and then the 2012 Moto3 championship title.
Cortese said after his victory at Sepang: “I can’t believe I have taken the title and with victory. I just waited and I wanted to finish in front of Salom and to show everyone that even if Vinales has gone home I could still take the title with a win.”
Next season Cortese has a two year deal to ride in Moto2 with a brand new team backed by two of Cortese’s current sponsors, Intact Batteries and Kuhn Bau. The team is to be called Intact GP, and he’ll be racing race a Kalex.