The in-form Fabio Di Giannantonio has secured himself a MotoGP reprieve for 2024, making the move from one Ducati satellite team in Gresini to another in VR46.
The 25-year-old had at looked like he would inevitably lose his place on the premier-class grid for much of the season, and was upgraded to a virtual certainty to leave MotoGP once Gresini managed to secure the services of Marc Marquez and Honda settled on Luca Marini as his replacement.
Despite this mini-chain reaction opening up a spot at the Valentino Rossi-owned VR46, team chief Uccio Salucci indicated as recently as Qatar that Di Giannantonio was unlikely to fill that seat, with VR46 looking to Moto2 instead.
Di Giannantonio, however, won the Qatar Grand Prix later that weekend, and signed off with another superb performance the following week at Valencia - where an on-the-road podium was lost to a tyre pressure infringement.
By then it had already become clear that VR46 would not be landing its primary target - Spaniard Fermin Aldeguer, who would've needed to be bought out (reportedly for €400,000) from the third year of his current Moto2 deal.
With other viable options from Moto2 also under contract and Di Giannantonio's MotoGP form blossoming, the decision will have been a simple one.
Di Giannantonio becomes VR46's first MotoGP rider not to have come from the VR46 Academy.
His announcement, following just hours from Marini being confirmed at the works Honda team, completes the 2024 grid in terms of riders - even if there's still uncertainty over one of the teams.
The full 2024 MotoGP grid
Ducati - Pecco Bagnaia, Enea Bastianini
KTM - Brad Binder, Jack Miller
Aprilia - Aleix Espargaro, Maverick Vinales
Yamaha - Fabio Quartararo, Alex Rins
Honda - Luca Marini, Joan Mir
Pramac Ducati - Jorge Martin, Franco Morbidelli
VR46 Ducati - Marco Bezzecchi, Fabio Di Giannantonio
Gresini Ducati - Alex Marquez, Marc Marquez
LCR Honda - Johann Zarco, Takaaki Nakagami
Tech3 Gas Gas - Augusto Fernandez, Pedro Acosta
Aprilia's satellite team* - Miguel Oliveira, Raul Fernandez
*RNF's status uncertain