Leading Endurance World Championship outfit Yamaha Austria Racing Team has revealed plans to move into the World Superbike Championship next season, kicking off with a wild-card appearance in this year's finale at Jerez.
The Austrian-based team has been a regular front-runner in the EWC over the years, winning the title in 2009, but having already concluded its 2013 endurance campaign, team manager Mandy Kainz has confirmed it will turn its attentions to World Superbikes by entering a Yamaha YZF-R1 for experienced racer Broc Parkes.
The one-off appearance is being treated as a trial for a part-time World Superbike programme in 2014 and while Kainz has only modest expectations for Jerez, he is hopeful it will lead to something more next year.
“Our expectations are not particularly high,” he said. “We do not know the track in Jerez and have no experience with the Pirelli tires. A place in the top ten would be great in these circumstances
“We are seriously thinking about competing in the SBK World Championship, but only at a few selected events. The whole thing is a matter of budget of course. A full season is not an option at the moment.”
Having shared rider duties with Igor Jerman, Josh Waters and Katsuyuki Nakasuga over the course of the EWC season, Parkes has been given the nod to lead YART's WSBK efforts in Spain.
A return to Superbike competition for Parkes – who has started 87 WSBK races in an international career spanning more than a decade – this will be the Australian's first outing in the series since 2010.