The fallout of Aprilia Racing boss Gigi Dall'Igna's departure to Ducati already is drifting to the ground of the MotoGP and World Superbike paddocks, with bigger piles stacking up around Nick Hayden and Eugene Laverty.
Hayden and Laverty were all but signed, sealed and delivered to race what would amount to a customer version of an Aprilia prototype next season in MotoGP for Aspar, with Dall'Igna serving as the technical godfather of the project in his leadership role for Aprilia.
That all has changed since Dall'Igna decided to head to Ducati. Both Hayden and Laverty are scrambling to examine other options for rides in the premier class next year. Hayden will leave Ducati's factory MotoGP team after five seasons, while Laverty is looking to climb to MotoGP from the Aprilia factory WSBK team.
Hayden admitted Dall'Igna's move caught him completely off guard.
"Ducati are not doing me any favors," Hayden said with a smile. "Not only do they sack me, but they take the guy that was going to be my engineer. Gigi has achieved a lot, and that's why I was impressed with him. It is why the Aprilia option was looking so good."
There is one common thread between Hayden's original plan with Aspar and all of his alternative plans - they're all in MotoGP.
Plan B appears to center on a Honda customer prototype, as Hayden already has discussed with HRC this summer about riding one of the new bikes for an undisclosed team. That team still could be Aspar, as team owner Jorge "Aspar" Martinez admits his team could use a customer Honda machine next season. But Martinez also is friends with Dall'Igna and admitted he could be tempted by the lure of a customer Ducati offered by his buddy.
It appears Aspar still probably will be Hayden's 2014 home, even if it uses a production Ducati. But Hayden's comments Friday at Sepang hinted he hopes Aspar picks Honda.
"We're definitely considering Honda as an option, which in the long run could turn out better," Hayden said. "But it's not necessarily (a straight Aprilia/Honda choice). I mean, in the last week, everything changed.
"This Honda thing really came back up - there's still a lot of details to sort out, like bike prices and sponsors. I've spoken to Livio (Suppo) at Honda, but the (Aspar) team is more discussing with Honda than me. I need to see what bike they want to use."
There was strong speculation in August at Indianapolis that Hayden would ride a customer Honda next season for a one-bike team with sponsorship from Red Bull and HRC. That rumor cooled when Hayden's links to Aprilia - his visit to the factory was confirmed through the fitness app on his phone - became known.
It's possible that option may have reheated. And it wouldn't be surprising if Dorna boss Carmelo Ezpeleta is involved in the wheelings and dealings, as Don Carmelo said this summer he wants to see popular American Hayden stay in the premier class next season.
Laverty also is considering options. The Northern Irishman has raced for Dall'Igna on Aprilia's factory WSBK team since 2012 and is second in points this year.
The bond between the two men is strong enough apparently for Laverty to consider a move to a Ducati team in MotoGP in 2014 despite the Desmosedici lagging far behind its Japanese rivals for the last three seasons. Laverty confirmed discussions with Ducati for MotoGP, without specifying a factory or satellite bike.
That ride could take a few forms. It could be on a Ducati customer bike with Aspar if Martinez decides to continue to work closely with friend Dall'Igna. It also could be a Ducati factory bike with Pramac if Dall'Igna decides to release Ben Spies or order him to race the also-struggling Panigale next year in World Superbike.
A ticking clock remains the biggest enemy of Hayden and Laverty. Post-season testing at Valencia starts in four weeks, and neither Hayden nor Laverty have a team for next season.
It's Maalox time for both.