Max Biaggi has denied rumours of a MotoGP return, riding a third Kawasaki for Jorge Martinez 'Aspar'.
Biaggi - a former triple 500cc/MotoGP World Championship runner-up who left grand prix racing under something of a cloud at the end of 2005, following a bitter split with Repsol Honda - has spent the last two seasons racing in the World Superbike Championship.
Since leaving grand prix racing, Biaggi has frequently been linked with Kawasaki's MotoGP project and - with his 2009 plans still to be confirmed - it was only a matter of time before the Roman was mentioned in connection with the to-be-announced Aspar seat.
"This morning I have read something that I have to deny, the rumours saying that I could have gone back to MotoGP," Max wrote on his official website today (Tuesday). "Personally I have never contacted any Team or Team Manager, not even Mr. Martinez. I will stay very focused on the last three races of the Championship and very soon guys, you will have my program for the future."
Biaggi, who finished third in the 2007 WSBK championship for Alstare Suzuki but is currently just seventh in the 2008 standings after an injury-interrupted season for the satellite Sterilgarda Ducati team, had hoped to secure a factory Xerox ride for 2009 but appears to have been overlooked in favour of Noriyuki Haga.
With a factory Honda, Yamaha or Suzuki ride thought highly unlikely, Max's name continues to be linked with Aprilia, for whom he won three of his four 250cc world titles. Aprilia is planning a factory WSBK return in 2009. There is also a spare seat at BMW, although that would require staying alongside present team-mate Ruben Xaus, who verbally abused Biaggi as he was being removed from the podium at Donington Park.
Aspar meanwhile had hoped to secure the services of Alice's Toni Elias for his team's forthcoming MotoGP debut, but the double 2008 podium finisher looks set to re-join Honda Gresini, leaving fellow Spaniard's Carlos Checa or Alex Debon as the most likely candidates.