Leon Haslam has described the decision to sign for Honda’s factory WorldSBK team in 2020 as a ‘no brainer’ after he found out all the details of the new bike, the team structure and the concept.
The squad will be run out of the same Barcelona setup as the Repsol Honda MotoGP team and has so far been operated by Alberto Puig, who is the GP team manager.
Haslam had been in talks with Honda for some time but it has only been in recent weeks that all the details of how factory the project was became clear. So Kawasaki’s decision to opt for Alex Lowes instead of Haslam ended up being the best thing possible for the Derby rider.
“I had thought everything was going to be the same with Kawasaki but after Suzuka, quite a few things changed with different directions, Toprak leaving and some uncertainty over what was happening,” said Haslam, speaking to bikesportnews.com from the EICMA show in Milan.
So, it was after that I made a connection with Honda. Their project in WorldSBK wasn’t very clear but after some questions, some waiting and figuring out the details, in the end it was a full HRC effort, new bike, Alvaro was definitely going so it was a no brainer.
“Honda wanted me to be a part of it and it escalated quite quickly once all the information was in place. HRC back in the championship with a new bike was a very easy decision to make but finding out the details took some time.
“The details have only been clear in the last few weeks. The interest was there for a while but understanding what it was, who was running it and other details came recently.”
Haslam has yet to meet his crew but will do so in coming days. A testing schedule has been fixed but it is not yet in the public domain.