Paul Bird planning BSB super team after quitting MotoGP
11 August 2014 16:57
Millionaire businessman Paul Bird is planning a four-rider super team in the 2015 British Superbike series after detailing plans to close down his PBM MotoGP squad at the end of the season.
Bird plans to expand his current two-rider assault in BSB by moving his MotoGP operation back to Britain and he is hoping to persuade Michael Laverty and Broc Parkes to race in the successful domestic series.
Bird currently runs Shane Byrne and Stuart Easton on Kawasaki ZX-10R machinery in a team backed by Rapid Solicitors.
The intriguing aspect of his future expansion plans is that he plans to run a second two-rider effort working with a different manufacturer.
Speaking to MCN in Indianapolis last weekend where he saw Laverty and Parkes both finish inside the points for the first time together, the PBM owner said: “I am really excited about BSB because it will definitely be working with two different brands.
"It looks like I can run with another manufacturer and have two teams on different bikes operating as two separate identities. I’d like to keep Michael and Broc. Broc is keen and Michael would like to stay here (in MotoGP) but I don’t think that is going to be possible.”
Bird confirmed he will be financially compensated for making his two grid slots available in MotoGP next season, with the International Race Teams Association acting on his behalf.
The big rumour in Indianapolis is that Aprilia will use the places for its two-rider factory squad.
Asked by MCN whether he would ever seriously consider returning to World Superbikes, his response was: “I would rather stick a fork in my eye.”
Bird, who has run his MotoGP squad since 2012 and built his own chassis to run an Aprilia motor, had also been asked to contemplate running a Moto2 squad.
But he said that had zero interest and he will operate exclusively in British Superbikes from 2015 onwards.
He added: “I have no interest in Moto2 at all. My racing future is back home in BSB and that’s what I enjoy and where my sponsors want to be. We are a British team and that’s where we’ll go back.”
For more on Bird’s decision to end his stint as a MotoGP boss, see the August 13 issue of MCN.