What next for Eugene Laverty after shock axe from World Superbikes?
Top Ulster racer Eugene Laverty last night spoke of his disappointment at being surprisingly dropped from his World Superbikes team for next season.
Laverty learned yesterday that he is being replaced in the Shaun Muir Racing BMW Team for 2019 by Tom Sykes, until recently world champion countryman Jonathan Rea's team-mate at Kawasaki Racing.
Toomebridge rider Laverty commented: "It won't be easy to find a seat having been informed of my replacement so late, however I won't give up."
Monaco-based Laverty felt he had done enough to retain his place after a first pole position and two podium finishes, having returned after a three-race absence following pelvic injuries sustained in an accident in Thailand.
The 32-year-old currently sits ninth in the World Superbike championship, one place ahead of his team-mate Lorenzo Savadori, who has also been axed.
Sykes has been under-performing in the Kawasaki team in the last two years and it is something of a shock for many that he has ousted Laverty from his seat.
Laverty said: "I'm proud of my record in WSB and I was looking forward at the prospect of riding the factory BMW in 2019. I just have two opportunities, at Qatar this weekend, to win before the team and I go our separate ways."
What is left for Laverty in WSB appears limited with Red Bull Honda one possibility or maybe a return to British Superbikes, although his main priority is to be on the WSB grid in Australia for round one in February 2019.