Leandro Mercado joins the MIE Honda Racing Team for the 2021 season aboard a CBR1000RR-R Fireblade. 

The announcement comes a day before the Official WorldSBK test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. 

Mercado’s first year in WorldSBK came in 2012 with Kawasaki, while the 29 year-old has also competed for Ducati and Aprilia. 

2021 will be the Argentine’s first season with Honda and is excited about the new challenge. 

"I’m very glad to announce that I’m joining the MIE Racing Honda Team for the upcoming WorldSBK season," said Mercado.

"It’s a new challenge for me and I will give it my all to achieve our goals. For the first time in my career, I will ride a Honda, an iconic brand. 

"I’m looking forward to riding the CBR1000RR-R FIREBLADE at the Barcelona official tests and to start working with the team. 

"I want to say thank you to MIE Racing for putting its trust in me and to everyone that has helped make it happen."

Mercado has never been on the podium so far in his WorldSBk career and instead enjoyed most of his success in the World Superstock 1000 series, taking the 2014 title. 

Speaking about the new acquisition, MIE Honda Racing Team Principal, Midori Moriwaki said: "I am delighted to welcome Leandro Mercado as the 2021 rider for the MIE Racing Honda Team in the WorldSBK Championship. 

"Tati [Mercado] is a gutsy rider who never holds back on track and in the pit garage. He is combative, fast, and determined to never give up, all aspects that fit perfectly with the story and philosophy of the MIE Racing Honda Team. 

"During his career, he has competed in different championships and with different machines, achieving success and courageously facing up to many challenges. 

"I am convinced that, together, we can achieve positive results both in terms of our performance on the track and the development of the CBR1000RR-R FIREBLADE."