Spain’s high-profile Aspar Honda squad has confirmed the signing of Irish rider Eugene Laverty for the 2015 MotoGP world championship.
Laverty’s premier class switch, which was first revealed by MCN last month, will see him ride a production Honda RC213V-RS alongside Nicky Hayden in 2015.
Laverty’s current Voltcom Suzuki World Superbike squad recently put out a statement confirming he will be leaving the British-based squad for 2015.
The World Supersport and World Superbike race winner had made it clear that he wanted to move to MotoGP next season and had talked in detail with Pramac Ducati, Forward Yamaha and Aspar Honda.
Laverty is well known to Aspar owner Jorge Martinez and team boss Gino Borsoi having negotiated with the team about a MotoGP deal for 2014 when it looked like the squad would continue with Aprilia’s ART project.
But Gigi Dall’Igna’s defection from Aprilia to Ducati saw Aspar complete an 11th hour switch to Honda and Laverty was left out in the cold.
Aspar had been keen on signing Jonathan Rea, but he turned down an offer around the time of the British Grand Prix at Silverstone in late August to switch to Kawasaki’s official factory World Superbike team.
Aspar then signed an agreement with current Kawasaki WSB rider Loris Baz, only to back out of the deal because he is too tall at 6ft 3in to fit the Honda RC213V-RS.
In a statement released by Aspar Honda this afternoon, Martinez said: “Eugene Laverty is a rider we were already in contact with last year, we tried to sign him then and even though we didn't manage it at the time he is a rider we have been interested in for a long time.
"I think he is a rider with great potential, he has produced some incredible races in Supersport and Superbikes, and he has a lot of wins on his record with a lot of different manufacturers, which says a lot about his capacity to adapt.
"Maybe he hasn't had the luck that you always need to win a world title but I am sure that he will be giving 100% to the DRIVE M7 Aspar Team.
"I am sure he will continue to develop as a rider and he can bring a lot to this team. He is ready to make the step to MotoGP. Next year we will have a new, more competitive Honda, and I have a lot of hope invested in our MotoGP project. I am sure we will achieve great results together.”