Pedercini Kawasaki has signed Leandro Mercado and David Salom to contest this year's World Superbike Championship.
Mercado rode for the Italian team in the FIM Superstock 1000 class in 2011, while Spaniard Salom – who impressed on his way to the runner-up spot in the World Supersport Championship last season on the Motocard.com Kawasaki – previously rode for Team Pedercini in WSBK 2009, albeit with only minor success.
“I'm very happy to say that I will join the Pedercini team for the 2012 World Superbike Championship," Salom said. "I know all the Pedercini team and they are professional, enthusiastic and ambitious.
“I want to thank the Pedercini family as they are giving me the opportunity to compete once again in the World Superbike category. I'm really looking forward to this new adventure, as staying on a Kawasaki motorcycle was very important to me.
“I know that, compared with 2009, the bike is now more competitive and the team also has more experience so I can't wait to get started.”
Mercado has long harboured an ambition to break into the World Superbike class and is indebted to the Perdercini team for granting him the opportunity to make his mark in the elite championship.
He finished 15th overall in the Superstock 1000 series in 2011, with the Argentine's best result of fifth place achieved at Silverstone.
“I am really happy to have made this choice and proud to be competing with Team Pedercini in World Superbikes,” he said. “Right from the start of my career, I always considered Superbike to be the premier class and my main goal.
“I am honoured to remain a part of this fantastic group of people and to be joining them as part of an ambitious project. I'm also very happy to have David Salom as a team-mate.
“I know he's an expert rider and I'm sure he'll help me as I start this new adventure in such a difficult world championship.”