Honda announces Lecuona, Vierge for 2022 WSBK season

Honda has announced it has signed Spanish rookies Iker Lecuona and Xavi Vierge for the 2022 World Superbike season.

As revealed by Motorsport.com last month (here and here), Lecuona and Vierge will form an all-new line-up for the Japanese marque next season, replacing veteran duo Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam.

Tuesday's announcement comes more than a month after the two riders made their agreements with Honda during the MotoGP Aragon Grand Prix weekend.

Lecuona, 21, moves to WSBK after two difficult seasons in MotoGP with the Tech 3 KTM squad that have so far yielded a best finish of sixth at the Red Bull Ring. The two-time Moto2 podium finisher sits 18th in the riders' standings with two races still to run this season.

Vierge meanwhile makes the switch from Moto2, where has raced full-time since 2016. In that time the 24-year-old has finished in the top three four times and scored three poles, but no wins.

Honda's decision to sign a pair of WSBK rookies follows two below-par seasons since the introduction of the current CBR1000RR-R bike last year with veterans Bautista and Haslam.

With only next month's Indonesia season finale still to run, Honda is virtually assured to finish fifth and last in the manufacturers' standings, with nearest rival BMW 54 points ahead.

Bautista, who will move back to Ducati next season in place of BMW-bound Scott Redding, sits 10th in the riders' table heading to Indonesia with two third-place finishes to his credit, while Haslam is two places further back with a best finish of fourth this season.

Haslam told Motorsport.com earlier this month that he is exploring options in British Superbike, MotoAmerica and the FIM Endurance World Championship for 2022 as he gets ready to exit WSBK.

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