In an effort to get out ahead of rumors suggesting Marco Simoncelli would be participating in World Superbike racing in 2011, his Gresini Honda MotoGP team has definitively stated that he will not be doing so. Though he appeared at the WSBK Monza round just this past weekend, Simoncelli will not be repeating his 2009 wild card performance at Imola or any other rounds this season. There, he placed third in the second race on an Aprilia, after not finishing the first race.
Simply put, there will be no extra racing for Simoncelli in a MotoGP field already marred by riders suffering health problems from extracurricular racing. However, Gresini Honda will be providing their star rider with a Honda CBR1000RR that he may test at his and the FIM’s discretion.
The team was quite firm that Simoncelli’s presence at Monza for WSBK racing had nothing to do with a WSBK wild card entry for the current MotoGP rider. Considering Simoncelli’s history, it would not have been out of the question for the rider to participate as a wild card at any of the WSBK rounds, though the team’s statement is adamant that he will not be doing so this year. Both Simoncelli and teammate Hiroshi Aoyama are at Le Mans, France this weekend for the fourth round of MotoGP racing.