Kawasaki Puccetti Racing has launched its World Superbike and World Supersport squads in preparation for the 2018 season and revealed Leon Haslam is lined up for a wildcard outing at the Imola round.

Toprak Razgatlioglu has been handed his World Superbike rookie campaign by the Puccetti squad after catching the eye for the team in the European Superstock 1000 championship last year. Puccetti has retained five-time World Supersport champion Kenan Sofuoglu and will also welcome Hikari Okubo as the Turkish rider’s new team-mate in the Supersport class for 2018.

During the presentation it was confirmed Haslam will return to the World Superbike championship with an Imola wildcard entry for Kawasaki Puccetti who will run two ZX-10RR bikes at the Imola and Misano rounds thanks to a sponsor deal with Elf with the second ZX-10RR given a special anniversary livery.

Haslam landed a wildcard entry last year for Puccetti at the Donington Park round and stormed to the team’s first podium with second place in race one. The British rider had been set to return to the Italian squad for the final two rounds of last season’s World Supersport championship but injury suffered at the British Superbike season finale at Brands Hatch ruled him out of the opportunity.

Haslam is unable to take up the Misano wildcard entry as it clashes with the Knockhill round in BSB where he competes for JG Speedfit Kawasaki. Kawasaki Puccetti confirmed its second Misano rider would be announced in the coming weeks.

“The event was really beautiful,” Puccetti said. “I would like to thank all the sponsors, the team and the insiders who participated and who helped make the event unique.

“Now we really do not have to start the season. The first round of Phillip Island is next and we can not wait to leave. Thanks again to everyone for the great affection and great support given to the team.”

Kawasaki Puccetti will now head to Phillip Island for the final pre-season test on the 19-20th February ahead of the 2018 season opener at the Australian circuit on the 23-25th February.

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