KTM: Zarco had "tears in his eyes" asking for termination

Jamie Klein

KTM announced on Monday morning that , who had initially penned a two-year deal with the Mattighofen-based squad, would leave at the end of the current season.

The move was agreed in an emotional meeting at the Red Bull Ring late on Saturday, according to Beirer, who described Zarco's decision as "understandable" but also "super-sad".

“It wasn't exactly our own decision," said Beirer on Red Bull-owned network Servus TV. "Johann came to me and Mike Leitner on Saturday evening, he wanted an appointment with us.

"We were a bit surprised, because the time was a bit unusual for a short briefing. And there he sat in front of us, really tense and with tears in his eyes, saying that at the moment he can't handle it anymore and he wants to get out of the contract.

"There wasn't much room to discuss anything. His decision was so firm and so clear and actually sad. For us the moment was actually super-sad, but it was also our wish to help him to get out of this situation and not to burden him even more.

"As a person and as a guy, how he sat there, it was really cruel to watch. On the other hand it is understandable from a sporting point of view. He sees himself with us in a valley where he can't get out any more, and now he just wants to realign himself."

Johann Zarco, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

Johann Zarco, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Gold and Goose / LAT Images

Gold and Goose / LAT Images