In a follow-up to yesterday's article on, it has now been confirmed that Alex Barros is planning to settle his future before the Sepang test, at the end of this month.

"We still can't say anything about the matter, but expect to make an announcement to the press next week," Barros' spokeswoman told Brazil.

It now seems almost certain that the announcement will officially name Barros as riding alongside Nicky Hayden, at the Repsol Honda team.

The 32-year-old could then make his debut for the factory outfit on January 21, the start of a three-day Honda test at the Malaysian circuit.

2003 Yamaha development rider Norick Abe is expected to replace Barros at the Fortuna backed Tech 3 team.

Yamaha will be present at Sepang from January 24 - 26, where Valentino Rossi will make his much anticipated M1 debut.



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