While most eyes will be on the fight for the World Superbike Championship title between Kawasaki and Aprilia, the final round of the 2013 season at Jerez will also represent the final appearance by BMW in a factory-assisted capacity.
The German manufacturer announced in July plans to reduce its involvement in World Superbikes, just five years after making its debut, the firm justifying the surprise move by indicating a desire to focus on its core road bike division instead.
A maiden foray into Superbike racing, BMW made its WSBK debut in 2009 with the S1000RR, a bike that – after a difficult first couple of seasons – has since emerged as a regular contender for race wins and podiums.
Enjoying its most successful seasons in 2012 and in 2013, though BMW will not exit the series with a much-coveted WSBK title to its name, it has racked up 12 race wins in that time and has triumphed at Superstock 1000 level in three of the last four years.
Looking forward, though BMW is withdrawing as a full manufacturer-supported entity, it remains possible that the firm will still be represented in some capacity next year.
With BMW hinting at plans to provide a degree of support for any potential privateer entry, word from the paddock suggests BMW Motorrad ambassador and two-time WSBK champion Troy Corser
– who headed up the S1000RRs development – is working on launching his own satellite BMW entry, with the team's Superstock winner Sylvain Barrier anticipated to be in line to ride the machine.
Meanwhile, current riders Marco Melandri and Chaz Davies have yet to confirm rides for 2014, though the former is expected to join Aprilia, while the latter is reportedly being courted by Ducati.