Michael Laverty expects to be challenging for consistent points-scoring finishes in MotoGP next season after a learning year in the premier class with PBM.
The Northern Irishman is still awaiting final confirmation of his options for 2014, but hopes to remain in MotoGP with Paul Bird's team, most likely using the PBM chassis and new Aprilia motor.
Bird has been in talks with Aprilia over the possibility of becoming the Italian manufacturer's official MotoGP team next season and a final announcement is expected soon on the Cumbrian entrepreneur's plans.
Laverty told the official MotoGP website: “For me, it was always brand-new at every race and every circuit - finding out new things and meeting new people.
“It was all foreign to me but I really enjoyed it and look forward to next year, now I know the ropes and all of the countries; where to get everything and so on, which will make the job so much easier.
“The good moment was scoring points in Jerez. At that stage, we were quite strong in the CRT rankings and I was passing guys like Colin Edwards and Claudio Corti – it was nice to be battling with them,” he added.
“The negative side was, having battled with those guys, they would move on during the season and we didn't which left us in a sort of no man's land for the second half of the year.
“If we continue with the PBM bike, I now have a clear picture on what changes I need in place for Sepang [tests] and some more horsepower from the Aprilia engine, for instance.”
Looking ahead to 2014, the former British Supersport champion said regular points-scoring finishes were a 'realistic' goal.
“We should be back with the PBM chassis and the new Aprilia engine. I will be aiming for consistent points scoring – I do think that is a realistic target.
“I would love to say top ten finishes, but that is not realistic right now. I think we have got to target the 'Open' Hondas and I do think scoring points will be possible,” added Laverty.
“The team and I were clearly frustrated last year, but now we have a better picture and clearer goals for the season ahead; we want to get more points on the board, or else we risk losing funding for 2015.”
In an added twist, team boss Paul Bird has today (Thursday) Tweeted the following picture of three Kawasaki ZX-10Rs, featuring the race numbers of Shane Byrne [67), Stuart Easton (5) - and Laverty (70). Bird previously stated that he would run a third bike for Laverty in BSB
if the team pulls out of MotoGP.
"A pic says 1000 words; or does it" - was Laverty's response.
PBM again has two MotoGP grid places available for 2014, but the possible second rider was not named on the recent provisional entry list.