Every year, people believe that in British Superbike “it’s impossible to do better than last season” in all respects: the championship is fine, BSB races are spectacular, many riders score at least one podium and, furthermore, every round is crowded with spectators. But do you know why we love BSB? Because the great work done by MotorSportVision Racing (MSVR) makes this championship grow season after season and the same will happen in 2019, whose first round will take place from 19th to 21st April in Silverstone’s National Circuit. It will be a can’t-miss season and here we tell you why.
A NEW START – Many changes have affected the grid for 2019 season. 2018 Champion Leon Haslam has gone back to World Superbike, Jake Dixon is ready to debut in Moto2 World Championship and Shane Byrne, unfortunately, must content of watching. All of this makes it difficult to say who may win 2019 championship: he may be 2015 Champion Josh Brookes (who has joined Be Wiser PBM Ducati) as well as Glenn Irwin (new Bournemouth Kawasaki rider), Jason O’Halloran (title contender with McAMS Yamaha), Bradley Ray, Peter Hickman, Tarran Mackenzie or Christian Iddon. And what if Scott Redding and Xavi Forés could fight for the title already in their debut season?
NEW FACES – It’s all true: for 2019, British Superbike has welcomed into a strong 30-rider field Scott Redding and Xavi Forés, coming respectively from MotoGP and World Superbike. But they’re not the only new faces: Andrew Irwin will face his first full season in BSB with Honda Racing UK, while Ben Currie (Bournemouth Kawasaki) and Ryan Vickers (Lee Hardy Racing) have made the step to BSB after great results in British Supersport and National Superstock 600. Moreover, former MotoGP and World Superbike competitor Claudio Corti will debut with Team WD-40 GR Motorsport Kawasaki, the same squad he had joined last year for some National Superstock 1000 races.
NEW BIKES – While no change has been done about the electronics (everyone will use MoTeC ECU and have no traction control, anti-wheelie or launch control, as usual), the field will welcome Ducati Panigale V4R and BMW S1000RR, as well as 2019 versions of already existing bikes (in particular Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR). The only problem is that now teams must hurry up in developing their machines: the brand new “Test Ban Period” we talked about yesterday (click here to read our article) has delayed testing until March (three days at Monteblanco and two at Portimao).
CALENDAR AND SPECTATORS – For 2019, BSB has welcomed some important changes concerning calendar: the season will start at Silverstone’s National Circuit, two rounds will be hosted at Donington Park instead of one (the first will take in May and provide 3 races on the short version of the circuit) and no race will be hosted at Brands Hatch Indy. 2019 BSB calendar will count on 12 rounds and the last three, at Assen, Donington GP and Brands Hatch, will be part of iconic BSB Showdown. 466.670 people attended BSB races in 2018 (average attendance: 38.000). Will this “World Championship” number increase in 2019?
Translated by Alessandro Palma