Well, silly season is officially coming to an end early this year. Contracts have been inked, riders are evaluating their new motorcycles, and anticipation for next year’s motorcycle racing championships is starting to build. But this year’s zany silly season has left us with a few questions, and the future of many motorcycle racers could still hang in the balance.
Should Eugene Laverty To Return To WSBK?
The signing of Alvaro Bautista to the Aspar Ducati Team may have been the final straw for Irishman Eugene Laverty’s MotoGP career, and not for the reasons you may be thinking. Bautista isn’t pushing Laverty out of the series by taking his position in the team. No, the Aspar team was just going to give the Spanish rider a Ducati GP16 bike for next year, leaving Laverty on the 2-year-old GP15.
In MotoGP, the latest technology is what puts you at the front of the grid, which often leaves satellite teams like Aspar fighting for scraps. The satellite teams usually receive last year’s technology and bikes, and that often puts them further back in the field. So an opportunity to get newer technology helps these satellite teams finish higher in the pecking order, and so you might begin to understand Laverty’s frustration with MotoGP.
In World Superbike (WSBK), Eugene Laverty was a winner. In 2013, he finished the season as the runner up to the championship. In MotoGP, he has had zero opportunity to win, and he blames the lack of an acceptable bike for this. So Laverty frequently requested the newer, yet still slightly obsolete GP16 to cure some of his racing ills, but this latest snub for new equipment might be too much.
As of round 11 of the MotoGP standings, Laverty is sitting at 11th place with 63 points. That means he is currently the fourth highest satellite team rider (not too shabby), but he is hungering for wins. In WSBK, he was fighting for the win every weekend, and he feels like not winning that championship has left him with a little bit of unfinished business in the other world championship. Currently the SMR team is courting Laverty to return to WSBK on their factory Aprilia RSV4.
Do you think Laverty should return to WSBK or stick it out? Or is Laverty’s MotoGP exit a symptom of a much larger problem with the series? Tell the lawyers that ride what you think on our Twitter and Facebook, and keep reading our blog to find out even more about racing and all the other aspects of riding a motorcycle.