Hernandez joins World Superbike with Pedercini Kawasaki
Former MotoGP rider Yonny Hernandez will make his debut in the World Superbike Championship with the Pedercini Kawasaki squad next season, the official entry list has revealed.
After spending five years in MotoGP between 2012 and '16, Hernandez returned to Moto2 for the start of the 2017 season after a difficult final campaign in the premier class with the Aspar Ducati team.
Struggling to readjust to 600cc machinery, Hernandez managed just three points finishes from the opening nine races of the season before he parted ways with the AGR team during the summer break.
Hernandez joined the official Honda team for the first round of the 2017/18 FIM Endurance World Championship, the Bol d'Or, where he managed to secure a third-place finish alongside teammates Gregory LeBlanc and Sebastien Gimbert.
Last month, he tested with the Pedercini team at Jerez, which fuelled rumours of the Colombian penning a deal with the satellite Kawasaki squad for next season.
The Pedercini rider will be one of five rookies present on the 21-strong WorldSBK grid in 2018, along with Honda's Jake Gagne Puccetti Racing's Toprak Razgatlioglu, TripleM Racing's PJ Jacobsen and Grillini Suzuki rider Gabriele Ruiu.
Ruiu won't make his debut until the Donington round of the championship in May, as this will be the first event after his 18th birthday. Grillini is set to announce a stand-in in the coming weeks.
It's also understood European Superstock 1000 champion Michael Ruben Rinaldi could join Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri as part of a three-rider factory Ducati team for at least some rounds in 2018.
Provisional 2018 WSBK entry list:
|Crescent Yamaha|| |
Michael van der Mark
|Honda Ten Kate|| |
|Milwaukee Aprilia|| |
|MV Agusta||Jordi Torres|
|Puccetti Kawasaki||Toprak Razgatlioglu|
|Pedercini Kawasaki||Yonny Hernandez|
|GoEleven Kawasaki||Roman Ramos|
|Orelak Kawasaki||Leandro Mercado|
|Barni Ducati||Xavi Fores|
|TripleM Honda||PJ Jacobsen|
|Guandalini Yamaha||Ondrej Jezek|
|Althea BMW||Loris Baz|
|Grillini Suzuki|| |
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