MotoGP challenger Michael Laverty left Silverstone empty-handed on his British Grand Prix debut but the Northern Ireland rider believes better days lie ahead.
Laverty seized the opportunity to join motorcycling’s elite this season, linking up with Paul Bird to contest the Claiming Rules Team (CRT) class on the PBM machine, which uses an in-house frame and is powered by Aprilia’s ART motor.
The 32-year-old outgunned team-mate Yonny Hernandez from Colombia during the final laps at Silverstone on Sunday to finish outside the points-scoring positions in 19th place.
Laverty admitted he had higher aspirations on his British MotoGP bow, but has adopted a patient stance as the team continues to develop the bespoke machine in the premier class.
“Obviously the end result is not where we want to be but that’s the reality of developing a new motorcycle against the world’s best,” said Laverty, who crashed unhurt during free practice on Saturday.
“We will improve from here, I’m confident of that.
“Silverstone was my first experience of a home GP and it didn’t disappoint, the crowd support was fantastic all weekend,” he added.
“It was great to see the amount of support the whole PBM team has as a British racing project.”
Laverty is 24th overall in the MotoGP championship standings and tenth in the CRT category, three places behind Hernandez in seventh.
The Toomebridge man earned his best result of the season so far with a terrific ride to 13th at Jerez in Spain, securing three championship points.
Laverty - whose brother and World Superbike contender Eugene plus fellow countryman Jonathan Rea have been linked with possible moves to MotoGP next year - will hope to sufficiently impress team owner Bird in the final part of the season to secure a new deal for 2014.
The Cumbrian entrepreneur, however, was unhappy with the team’s results at Silverstone.
“We need to up our game and do it soon as this sort of performance isn’t what we are capable of,” said Bird.
“Hopefully lessons have been learned this weekend and I’m expecting much better results at Misano [September 15].”