Anthony West has been officially confirmed at the Stiggy Motorsport Honda team for the 2009 World Supersport Championship.
The 27-year-old's departure from MotoGP was expected after a nightmare season at Kawasaki, during which he has steered the uncompetitive ZX-RR to just one top nine finish (fifth) and currently sits 18th and last of the full time riders in the world championship standings - albeit just four points behind team-mate John Hopkins.
West is no stranger to World Supersport, having taken two wins and one third position during three stand-in rides for Yamaha in 2007. Those stunning results helped pave the way for his Kawasaki MotoGP move midway through last season and the Australian will now make a full time WSS attack after signing to ride for his former 250GP team-mate Johan Stigefelt.
"I'm very happy to be joining the Stiggy team," said West, whose place at Kawasaki will go to Marco Melandri. "Stiggy is a friend an old team-mate from 2003 in 250GP. I remember saying to him one day that he should start his own team because none of the other teams knew how to do it right, and to my surprise he did!
"Over the last couple of years I heard from everybody in the industry that the Stiggy team it's one of the better ones in the championship. To have a team boss that knows what it's like to race and knows what racing is all about is just great! After a difficult year in MotoGP I need to race on a bike that can win, and in Supersport together with team Stiggy I can. For 2009 I have only one goal - to win!" he declared.
Stiggy Honda currently fields Australian Josh Brookes and Dane Robbin Harms in WSS. Brookes has taken six podiums - including one race win - to hold third in the championship with one round to go, whilst Harms sits ninth with one podium to his credit.
"I'm very pleased to have Anthony onboard," said Stigefelt. "We both come from MotoGP and the 250cc class and know each other well, having been team-mates in 2003. I know he is a talented rider, a fighter and a winner and he will be the perfect match for us next year.
"Ever since his 'wild-card' ride in Supersport 2007, I have wanted him in our team. Now it's a reality and we will have to put all our efforts into a successful relationship. With four years experience in World Supersport, I believe we'll be able to give him a winning Honda. Our aim is high - we will be fighting for the title next year," he declared.
2009 will also see Stiggy Honda graduate to the WSBK class, with Leon Haslam already confirmed.