British Superbike Cup competitors STP Motorsport have announced they will be present for the final World Superbike round in Portugal after snapping up a wild-card entry.
The team, paired with experienced rider Chris Burns, have campaigned the only MV Agusta bike on the BSB grid this season, scoring a best overall result of 11th place in the final round at Brands Hatch.
However, it isn't certain whether they will be returning the legendary MV Agusta brand to the World Superbike grid having been in talks to potentially take on a completely new machine.
For the moment though, the same F4 1000 will be making the trip to the all-new Portimao circuit, albeit upgraded to World Superbike specification.
“Due to an administration problem we missed out on a wildcard at Donington Park and, given the conditions back in September, I am certain that Chris Burns would have added to the success of the BSB riders at that round,” says Jon Strike, STP Motorsport Team Principal.
“So, never one to shy away from a challenge we put in our entry for Portugal and have been successful. At this point in time the intention is to take the MV Agusta F4 1000 that we have been running this season in British Superbikes, which we will convert to world Superbike specifications.
“However, we are in discussions with a number of team owners/managers in regard to using a different bike. Having a choice like this is a nice position to be in and it is nice that our efforts this season are recognised by other teams.”
Burns, meanwhile, is delighted with the chance to be competing in such a competitive field, where he will join fellow BSB contenders Leon Haslam and Cal Crutchlow, as well as Brit Tommy Bridewell.
“To get into the World Superbike paddock is a fantastic opportunity for me and the team,” he said. “Furthermore, the offers that have come in for us to ride full-blown Superbikes simply adds to the anticipation. As Portimao is a brand new circuit we will no be at such a disadvantage as everybody will be starting from scratch. Looking at the circuit online it looks like the sort of track that will suit my riding style.”
Should STP race the MV Agusta, it will be the first time the iconic manufacturer has competed on the world stage since last year when Christian Zaiser rode the private F4 312R for the LBR Racing Team.