Kawasaki has announced that Alex Lowes will remain part of its factory World Superbike squad for the 2021 season.
The Japanese manufacturer signed Lowes to join five-time WSBK champion Jonathan Rea and replace Honda-bound Leon Haslam for the 2020 campaign.
Lowes got his Kawasaki tenure off to a strong start during the opening round at Phillip Island, which took place before the season was placed on hold by the global coronavirus pandemic, beating teammate Rea to win the final race of the weekend.
He leads the riders' standings by 14 points over new Ducati recruit Scott Redding.
“It is great be with Kawasaki for 2021," commented Lowes. "I can continue adapting to the team and adapting myself to the ZX-10RR.
"Ever since I joined the team I have really felt like it was an opportunity to for me to make another step forward with my riding. Being teammates with Johnny [Rea] I feel can learn so much from him and the atmosphere in the team is great.
"The current situation in the world is not ideal for anyone but Kawasaki really makes me feel positive and focused on the future. It has been fantastic to get something sorted for 2021 before going into the rest of the races this year."
While Rea has yet to sign a deal to remain at Kawasaki beyond 2020, the Northern Irishman looks all but certain to extend a relationship that dates back to 2015.
Kawasaki team manager Guim Roda said that having Lowes alongside Rea was a "good combination" for the squad.
“The job Alex has done until now, his motivation for the KRT project and the serious way he trains himself to be the fittest rider he can be have been such strong arguments to renew with him," said Roda.
"It also gives him the time and reassurance to show his full potential on the ZX-10RR.
"We find him a good combination with Rea in terms of mutual respect, and the competition between the riders will help lift up the team to the maximum.
"Fixing an agreement with Alex for 2021 so early in the season will give him a calmness to fully concentrate on his racing and make the best results possible this year.”
Besides Lowes, the only other riders on the WSBK grid with 2021 deals already in their pockets are Ducati's Redding and Yamaha's Toprak Razgatlioglu.