Aprilia USA Announces 2009 AMA Daytona SportBike Factory Team

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Aprilia USA, the North American importer and distributor of Aprilia sport bikes, announces the debut of an all-new factory-sponsored road racing team in the new 2009 AMA Daytona SportBike class, part of the 2009 AMA Superbike Championship series. The Factory Aprilia Millennium Technologies team will be managed exclusively by KWS Motorsports and will compete on the Aprilia RSV 1000R. The 12-race Daytona SportBike class premieres at the historic, first-ever night-time running of the Daytona 200 at Daytona International Speedway, March 6.

With the debut of Italy's Max Biaggi and Shinya Nakano onboard Aprilia's much anticipated new RSV4 superbike in the 2009 World Superbike series, Aprilia USA is considering its rookie season on the Daytona SportBike circuit as an important American circuit test bed for 2010.

"With a new team structure, new riders and the new RSV4 en route for 2010, a season's worth of preparation with KWS and real-world racing experience for Aprilia USA at this level has tremendous benefits," said Rick Panettieri, brand manager, Aprilia USA. "The current-model RSV has long been respected for its race-bred DNA and its precise and predictable handling under even the most aggressive riding conditions, which has made it a favorite among track day enthusiasts. We chose KWS Motorsports as a racing partner for their expertise in creating top-performing race and production bikes. This will ensure that the RSV is tuned to give the competition a real challenge."

Designed to promote close racing action, the new Daytona SportBike series features a variety of high-performance motorcycles, with four-cylinder, triple-cylinder and twin-cylinder engines.

Ben Thompson will be returning to the KWS team as the primary rider as well as 2008 KWS crew chief Michael Godin. Thompson, who previously rode on Aprilia's Moto-ST team at Daytona Motor Speedway, will be teamed with another, yet to be announced second rider. Factory Aprilia Millennium Technologies team manager, Chip Spalding, is currently in discussions with both riders and sponsors and can be contacted for additional information at the company's headquarters at chip@kwsmotorsports.com.

"After several successful seasons in AMA Superbike and Superstock, launching a factory Daytona SportBike program for Aprilia is a real thrill," said Spalding. "Daytona under the lights is the perfect way to start what we know will be a memorable series."

"We are very proud to partner with Aprilia USA and are extremely excited to have the RSV in our race shop," said team owner Kevin Hunt. "Great racing in this series starts with a strong production sport bike and the RSV definitely exceeds that criteria." The team will also be supported by long time KWS sponsor Millennium Technologies, the world renowned leader in the field of cylinder repair and replating.