We interviewed him over the winter and could tell just how keen he was to get back in the saddle. And yet, it seems there’s nothing doing for Eugene Laverty. The SBK tests are in progress at Barcelona, but team RC Corse and the Irishman are not riding. Since the start of 2021, the team has not yet completed a single lap, at any track.

The situation appears complicated. It seems that the bike is not yet ready, still missing some parts including the wheels and brakes. This is what we’ve heard around the paddock. Other fairly reliable sources suggest that the team is already behind with its various payments.

Eugene nevertheless appears fairly relaxed about it all: "Before getting here, I knew there was a chance I wouldn’t ride. In fact I’m not really surprised. It’s a real pity, but I’m confident that this tricky situation will get sorted out".

A new swingarm, advanced aerodynamics and a riding style to adapt

Laverty is not giving up: "I have a test rider contract with BMW - he explains - so I have a job. But I want to race. Also because the new bike looks very promising. The swingarm has been redesigned, and is perhaps suited to the build of Sykes and Van Der Mark. I’ll have to readapt, because even the aerodynamics are different”.

The absence of team RC Corse jars with the rider’s van, parked up in the Montmeló paddock: "I want to see what happens - continues #50 - we don’t have long until the championship starts. I’ll be there. I’m working on a plan B, with or without RC Corse".

Translated by Heather Watson

WorldSBK, Bautista and Haslam: “We want to bring the Honda to victory”