Is Stella Artois Italian

Michael Bartholemy (Marc VDS): So far not dismissed

At the Jerez GP, violent allegations were made against Marc VDS Racing team principal Michael Bartholemy, who has headed the Moto2 team since 2010 and has also run the MotoGP team of the same name since 2015.

There were financial irregularities, Bartholemy was accused of, it was a sum in the seven-digit range.

"If I had such sums, I would not be at the races, but on vacation," said Bartholemy, who protested his innocence in an interview with SPEEDWEEK.com.

There was a huge unrest in the team. More than 40 employees trembled about their jobs. Team owner and main sponsor Marc van der Straten (VDS), a 70-year-old beer billionaire and descendant of the Stella Artois dynasty, traveled to Jerez with the Italian Marina Rossi, who is expecting a child from KTM Moto2 rider Sam Lowes and from Bartholemy was dismissed as team coordinator after seven years in the winter. She is said to have handed over incriminating documents to van der Straten, was heard at the Spanish GP.

Van der Straten was urgently asked by the officials of Dorna and IRTA in Jerez to continue to operate and finance the team despite the possible separation from Bartholemy. Dorna and IRTA also did their best to appease the amazed and angry sponsors of the team. Van der Straten was assured that the two precious MotoGP team positions would be retained despite all the turbulence - at least until the end of the 2021 season. Van der Straten then announced in a dry press communiqué on Sunday (May 6) that he had the intention to continue the team as planned until the end of 2021.

Michael Bartholemy organizes the racing with a company that has recently moved to Switzerland called MM Performance & Racing AG, Obstmarkt 1, CH-9100 Herisau. This is the capital of the Swiss canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden, which has only 55,000 inhabitants.

The two Moto2 courses belong to the Bartholemy company MM Performance & Racing AG, but must be applied for with an application every year. And without the current sponsors, it would be difficult for the team principal to continue running the racing team anyway.

A meeting of the parties to the dispute should have taken place in Geneva on Monday, chaired by a Bâtonnier, the chairman of the local bar association. There, court proof against Bartholemy should be put on the table and an out-of-court settlement should be sought. Then the disempowerment or dismissal of Bartholemy should be the next step.

"But the meeting was canceled Friday night," reported Bartholemy. «On Sunday evening I was informed again in writing that I should not come to Geneva, please. It's madness. As I said in Jerez: I cannot influence what some people say about me. I can only assure you: I haven't made a single mistake. I don't know exactly what's going on now. Maybe I paid too much attention to the team and the results and paid too little attention to who on the team is sawing my chair. "

Apparently, the Marc VDS team has not yet had anything tangible against Michael Bartholemy. The team will compete in their usual formation at Le Mans - and Bartholemy will be in command. In Jerez Tom Lüthi's crew chief Gilles Bigot had already been brought into play as the new team manager.

"I was informed in a letter that my contract has not been terminated," Bartholemy told SPEEDWEEK.com today.