By Christina Bulpett
Eugene Laverty has expressed his desire to stay with Aprilia for the 2014 season, whether he remains in the World Superbike Championship or steps up to MotoGP.
Laverty, along with Honda's Jonathan Rea, has been persistently linked with a switch to the premier motorcycling series in recent weeks, with the Irishman tipped to be part of Aprilia's rumoured plans to get more involved in the CRT category.
Though not an official entry, the Aprilia RSV4-based Team Aspar CRT bike has all-but-dominated the class since its introduction in 2012 and has made notable strides towards challenging the fully fledged production racers ahead this year.
Coupled to new cost-saving rules being introduced to World Superbikes in 2014, which are expected to hamper Aprilia more than many of its rivals, the manufacturer is rumoured to be considering a switch of focus to MotoGP from next year.
For Laverty, who joined Aprilia in 2012, he has expressed a desire to remain with the manufacturer for the upcoming season, but says he is waiting for Aprilia to formulate its 2014 plans.
“I don't know at this stage,” he told Crash.net
. “A lot has been happening and Aprilia have been working hard on their plans for next year. I want to be with Aprilia but I will have to see what Gigi's plans are for me and the rest of the team.”
Touching on the new WSBK regulations for 2014, which include a limit on engines and the introduction of a new EVO class, though the move has drawn mixed opinions from many riders, Laverty says this is the direction the series needs to pursue.
“It's good for the future definitely, because the grid is dwindling. The top ten has a lot of good bikes and riders, but then the machinery drops off so we need to get it so there is good depth in the field again because it is expensive to understand that. The EVO class could be a good way to even things up for smaller teams.
“Ideally we want to be still riding these trick Superbikes because it's a lot of fun, but I can see where the class has to go and EVO is probably the future.”