Eugene Laverty to test for Aprilia in MotoGP alongside WSBK in 2017

Outgoing Aspar Ducati rider Eugene Laverty will pair a MotoGP test role with Aprilia with his return to the World Superbike Championship in 2017

This weekend's season finale at Valencia is Laverty's last in MotoGP after two years with the Aspar team, which switched from Open-class Hondas to GP14.2 Ducatis in 2016.

Aspar will field one 2016-specification and one '15-spec Ducati next year, and it has signed Aprilia refugee Alvaro Bautista to ride the newer bike.

Laverty then elected to head back to World Superbikes with Aprilia, having been runner-up in the series in 2013 with the Italian manufacturer.

The 30-year-old will also test Aprilia's MotoGP RS-GP, starting with next week's post-race sessions at Valencia.

Supporting new race riders Aleix Espargaro and Sam Lowes, Laverty is set to act as its reserve.

"We will have Eugene Laverty as a rider with a factory-supported team in World Superbikes next year and we agreed with him a test plan for next year," Romano Albesiano, Aprilia Racing manager, said.

"Eventually we would consider him the first choice to eventually replace an injured rider."

Having finished 22nd in the 2015 MotoGP standings, Laverty is 12th with one round remaining this year, with his best race result fourth in the Argentinian Grand Prix.

Former MotoGP rider Mike di Meglio has been Aprilia's primary test rider this year.

"Part of the improvement we have done is thanks to him," Albesiano said of de Meglio.

"We really appreciate him this year and we are talking to him to continue as a test rider as well, next year."

Previous article MotoGP Valencia: Jorge Lorenzo leads Valentino Rossi in practice one
Next article Valencia MotoGP: Jorge Lorenzo quickest again in practice two