Sebastian Porto will join the factory Aprilia squad for next year's 250cc World Championship, after signing a deal with the Italian marque during the Valencia season finale last weekend.

Although he has yet to be assigned a team, the move comes as a bonus for the Argentine rider, who endured a less than satisfying season aboard the Movistar Junior Team Honda in 2003.
"I am both happy and proud that Aprilia noticed what I was doing and wanted to sign me," he told Argentine newspaper la Nacion, "And reaching this agreement now, before the winter break, is good for me. I have never closed a deal before the end of the year before, but now I can return to Argentina and relax before next season begins."

Porto was quick to point out that he had signed his deal directly with Aprilia, rather than any one team, and said that he expected to receive the same level of support afforded to this year's world champion, Manuel Poggiali. The train of thought is different to that assumed by Toni Elias, who left the Aspar Aprilia team to join Fortuna Honda because, amongst other reasons, he felt that it would be difficult to win the title while an Italian led the Aprilia squad.



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