Having missed out on top non-factory honours by just 1.5s to Pol Espargaro at Jerez, Eugene Laverty has his sights firmly set on being the best 'independent' this weekend at Le Mans.

The Aspar Ducati rider ranked his ninth place at Jerez, where he was around one-second a lap from race winner Valentino Rossi's pace, as a greater sense of achievement than the career-best fourth in the shortened Argentina (bike swap) race.

"I was very satisfied with the last race at Jerez. My aim was to maintain this strong top ten form and we did exactly that with ninth position," Laverty said.

"We arrive at Le Mans with good confidence and good momentum, my aim is to make another top ten finish and keep fighting to be the top independent team.

"We were so close at Jerez, just 1.5 seconds off, so this time we want to make sure we arrive first. I think the Le Mans circuit should actually suit our bike a lot, so I am looking forward to it."

Laverty is ninth in the world championship and just three points behind Avintia's Hector Barbera, also riding GP14.2 machinery. The only other non-factory rider ahead of them in the standings is Tech 3 Yamaha's Espargaro, in fifth.



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