Amongst the current Factory riders, I believe that Capirossi is the only one losing a factory seat and has been rumored to be going back to Ducati, perhaps at Pramac or maybe even LCR Honda??
Will Interwetten Honda even be around next year, which leaves Aoyama's status in doubt. Will Honda attempt to foot the bill to keep a Japanese rider in the series? Do they have enough pull with Dorna to receive a subsidy to make this a reality?
Edwards, is plainly frustrated with his lack of success this year and is another guy who should go back to WSBK. Put him on a competitive bike, and he will win races. Which begs the question, who takes his seat? Evidently Poncharal is very high on Cal Crutchlow??? Seriously?
Capirossi is vacating his seat willfully. They aren't kicking him out. He was even considering/trying to get out of his Suzuki contract early, or so says rumor. He'll sign at Pramac.
Dorna likely wants a Japanese rider as much as Honda does. Keeping a rider in the series from that country helps them keep selling TV contracts and general interest. Same reason they want a Brit back in GP and will likely get that with Crutchlow
Edwards is linked to Ducati SBK for next year. Could be somewhere else. IDK
HRC will probably be Dovi and Stoner, because I'm damn sure Pedrosa will want to get his foot in the door with Yamaha and would take a seat at Tech 3. He's felt for the longest time that he needs to be on the Yamaha if he has a chance at victory.
LCR will definitely be keeping DePuniet, and I'd really like to see them get 2 more bikes and throw Elias on it. With the publicity this year and how well DePuniet has been doing, paired with Elias, that's a damn good matchup for them to have. Probably not a possibility until 2012 though, but you never know.
If Elias can't get to LCR on a 2nd bike, I'm sure he'll have a ride at Interwetten Honda. With Aoyama's injury, it's in his best interest to go down to Moto2, regain his bearings, then come back up to MotoGP, unless they work it out as 2011 being a testing season for him to get used to things in anticipation of the 2012 1000cc change.
Surprisingly, there's going to be a 6th Ducati with Karl Abraham on it. It's already been confirmed, and proves that when your dad owns a race track and has a lot of money, it doesn't matter that you're a lack luster racer.
I can't see Pedrosa taking a satellite position anywhere. If he wants on a Yamaha, he's going to sign direct to the factory squad which doesn't seem likely anytime soon with Lorenzo and Ben on the team. He'll resign a 1 year deal with Repsol again. The only way Repsol is going to be Stoner/Dovizioso is if Dovi outshines Pedrosa which I don't see happening. Being Spanish gives him a leg up over Dovizioso too with Repsol. Honda's bikes have improved a lot from the start of the year and if Pedrosa keeps his fast pace up, he's got no problem staying there. He won't be any better off at Tech 3 and he has no leverage to get to the factory team. Originally when Repsol signed Stoner, they wanted a 3 man team but that fell through. But it was never really an option that it might be anything other than Pedrosa/Stoner and Dovizioso on a Red Bull bike maybe or Telefonica or something. Since that deal is out the window, the next probable case is placing him in Gresini which is good for Fausto since he won't be paying either of his riders. They'll both be HRC contracted riders. And they keep an all italian line up which they use right now to market their asses off in that part of the world.
I'd like to see another bike at LCR too but I don't see how it will happen at this point without some serious money. LCR operates as it is selling sponsorship contribution on a race by race basis. Playboy, Givi, Rev-it, etc. At the very best, Honda will take better care of Randy as they have this year after he put his ass out there with that string of strong performances.
Honda will likely keep Aoyama. He's supposed to be riding on Monday at the test and he'll have the opportunity to keep learning the bike and the tires and all that for the rest of the year. Sign him again for next year. Elias' only chance really is to ride Suzuki and hope to put on a good show while everybody knows the bike is not great and hope to get signed to a better ride after that. He's good but he's not in GP right now because nobody wanted him. He only seemed to really start riding up to his talent when contract time rolled around. And it seemed he wanted a decent amount of money to sign. We'll see. But being Japanese will help Aoyama keep his seat there.
I can't knock Abraham. More bikes is better and getting money to race is probably more than 50% of the problem. Ducati have already let him test the bike and he did pretty damn good setting times pretty close to the others. Let him have at it. Not like he's kicking anybody else out like Talmasci did last year.