Round 2 WorldSBK, Mandalika, Indonesia, Race 2

Mandalika always seems to throw plenty of drama, and talking points into the mix, and Sunday was no exception, with drama from start to finish.

WorldSBK Mandalika, Round 2, Race 2 Picture courtesy of WorldSBK

The earlier Superpole race was full of incidents, and it was Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK Team) who was able to avoid them all and secure the win, followed by fellow team mate Andrea Locatelli in 2nd, with Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) in 3rd rounding out the podium. Championship leader Alvaro Bautista crashed out for his 1st DNF of the season.

Before the start of race 2, Loris Baz (Bonovo Action BMW) was declared unfit to start, due to suffering a fractured leg in contact with Lowes in the superpole race. Remi Gardener (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) however was able to start after his illness.

Lights out then for race 2, and it was Toprak with the hole shot into turn 1, followed by Yamaha team mate Locatelli in 2nd, Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 3rd, Bassani (Motocorsa Racing Ducati) 4th, Lowes 5th and Vierge (Honda HRC) 6th. Lowes made a move on Bassani briefly taking 4th, before the Italian was able to snap back to retake the position. Bautista was down in 8th.

On lap 19 of the 21, Bassani who had an incredible start and was looking very aggressive, was now in 2nd, and blasted past Locatelli to take the lead. Toprak however had been mugged, and now found himself down in 5th. Rinaldi ( Racing Ducati) also had a great start and was moving through the field. Positions were as follows: 1. Bassani 2. Rinaldi 3. Rea 4. Lowes 5. Toprak 6. Vierge 7. Locatelli 8. Bautista 9. Redding (Rokit BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) 10. Aegerter (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team).

Next lap and Rinaldi continued his forward advance, and now got through on Bassani to take over the lead for the first time. Lowes also went through on Rea into 3rd.

With 17 laps remaining Bautista was now up to 7th, after getting through on Locatelli who was in 8th. Toprak dived under Rea into turn 10 to take 4th. Meanwhile Bassani was instructed to drop 1 position for dangerous riding.

Next lap and it was Rinaldi with the new fastest lap time a 1:33.0, and he held a gap of 0.8s to Bassani. Bassani then eased off the throttle to allow Lowes through, however Toprak snapped up the chance also coming through. Bassani lost 2 places and was in 4th.

WorldSBK Mandalika, Round 2, Race 2 Picture courtesy of WorldSBK

With 15 laps of 21 remaining Rinaldi was looking at ease in front, and set another fastest lap this time a 1:32.668. Meanwhile further back however, it was utter carnage, with firstly Lowes running off track, then both Rokit BMW’s crashed, and Oettl (GoEleven Racing Ducati). The German collided into the back of Vd Mark, sending the Dutchman high siding with a nasty crash, both were out, then Redding lost his BMW into a corner and he was down. It was absolute mayhem! Meanwhile Bautista had got through on Rea, and was up to 4th.

Then with 14 laps left, and unsurprisingly, the race was red flagged. The new race distance after the restart would be 14 laps with Rinaldi in pole position, Toprak 2nd, Vierge 3rd, Bautista 4th, and Rea 5th. Both Lowes and Redding were able to restart.

Lights out for the 2nd time in the race, and Rinaldi got the hole shot into turn 1, followed by Toprak 2nd, Bautista 3rd, Vierge 4th, Rea 5th, Bassani 6th, Locatelli 7th, Redding 10th, and Lowes 14th.

With 12 laps left, it was the other Ducati setting the fastest lap, this time it was Bautista with a 1:32.5, and he was all over the back of Toprak looking for the pass. Rinaldi held a gap of 0.8s out in front.

Next lap and not to be outdone by his team mate, it was Rinaldi with the fastest lap a 1:32.3, and was pulling away from Toprak behind, the gap now at 1.3s. Bautista then made his move on Toprak with a super move into turn 15, slicing under the Yamaha R1 to take 2nd. Bassani then got through on Rea into turn 1 to take 5th, Rea now in 6th.

Just over half race distance, and positions were as follows: 1. Rinaldi 2. Bautista 3. Toprak 4. Vierge 5. Bassani 6. Rea 7. Locatelli 8. Petrucci (Barni Spark Racing Ducati)9. Lecuona (Honda HRC) 10. Gardner.

With 8 laps to go, Rinaldi held a gap of 1.1s to Bautista. Bautista in turn held a gap of 1.2s to Toprak behind in 3rd.

Next lap and Rea cut under Bassani into the penultimate corner to take back 5th. Then drama for the 6 times world champion a few corners later, as he lost the front end into the high speed turn 7, sliding out, and his race was over. Another disappointing race for Kawasaki, as Lowes was down in 14th and not looking comfortable.

With only 5 laps remaining positions were as follows: 1. Rinaldi 2. Bautista 3. Toprak 4. Vierge 5. Locatelli 6. Bassani 7. Petrucci 8. Lecuona 9. Gardner 10. Redding.

Last 3 laps and Bautista had now caught his team mate, looking like he had a lot more tyre grip than Rinaldi. Toprak was still in 3rd, but out of contact for the race win.

Next lap and Bautista took Rinaldi into turn 10, and was looking good for the win.

Last lap and Rinaldi had lost his race rhythm, he overshot turn 10 going wide and lost places. However his team mate would make no mistake, and crossed the line to make it 5 wins out of 6 races this season. Toprak 2nd, Vierge 3rd, Rinaldi 4th, Locatelli 5th, Petrucci 6th, Gardner 7th, Bassani 8th, Lecuona 9th, Redding 10th.

WorldSBK Mandalika, Round 2, Race 2 Picture courtesy of WorldSBK

Result top 5:

  1. Bautista ( Racing Ducati)
  2. Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK Team)
  3. Vierge (Honda HRC)
  4. Rinaldi ( Racing Ducati)
  5. Locatelli (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK Team)

Championship top 3:

  1. Bautista – 112 pts
  2. Razgatlioglu – 75
  3. Locatelli – 70

WorldSBK Round 2 Mandalika Race 1

Scorching hot temperatures on track for the Superpole of 60 degrees Celsius. And it was the factory Yamahas of team mates, Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK Team), and Andrea Locatelli who claimed a 1, 2. Toprak claimed top spot with an unbeaten time of 1:32.037, and rounding out the front row was Alvaro Bautista ( Racing Ducati) in 3rd.

WorldSBK Round 2 Mandalika Race 1 Picture courtesy of WorldSBK

It was still blazing hot for the start of race 1, and the infamous Lombok thunderstorms, were yet to make an appearance to the relief of the grid. Most of the riders went for a harder rear tyre, the SC0, while the Ducatis gambled on the softer SCX, would the gamble pay off? Unfortunately both Gardner (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team), and Granado (Petronas MIE Racing Honda Team) were declared unfit to start due to illness.

Lights out then for race 1, and it was Toprak with the hole shot into turn 1. Drama on the first corner for Rinaldi ( Racing Ducati), who over cooked it and ran into the rear of Bassani (Motocorsa Racing Ducati), sending Rinaldi down and out of the race.

Next lap and positions were as follows: 1. Toprak 2. Bautista 3. Bassani 4. Petrucci (Barni Spark Racing Ducati) 5. Locatelli 6. Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 7. Vierge (Honda HRC) 8. Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 9. Redding (Rokit BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) 10. Gerloff (Bonovo Action BMW).

With 19 of 21 laps remaining it was Locatelli with the fastest lap of 1:33.7.

With 17 laps to go, and after a poor start Rea was steadily making progress in 6th, and then cut under Petrucci to take 5th. Meanwhile further ahead, Bautista had enough of sitting behind Toprak and cut up the inside of the former champion into turn 15, to take the lead for the first time. It was a Ducati 1, 2 followed by the Yamaha team mates of Toprak and Locatelli, and then the Kawasaki team mates of Rea and Lowes.

With 15 laps remaining Bautista was slowly extending his lead with the gap at 0.6s. Meanwhile further back Vd Mark (Rokit BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) was up to 9th, ahead of team mate Redding 10th, and Baz (Bonovo Action BMW) was 11th.

Next lap and it was Bautista with the new fastest lap, a 1:33.1. Would Toprak, who was unbeaten here last year, be able to respond?

With 13 of 21 laps remaining, Bautista again put in another fastest lap of a 1:32.975. Meanwhile further back, Baz got though on Redding to move into 10th. The Kawasaki’s were not having a good start to the weekend, and both were now losing contact with the 4 riders ahead.

Next lap and it was the 6 times world champion who was holding his team mate up, Lowes eventually had enough and got past Rea to move into 5th. Meanwhile at the front Bautista held a gap of 0.8s.

With 11 laps to go, Locatelli who was having a great start to his season, got through on fellow Italian Bassani into turn 10, to move up into 3rd. Meanwhile Rea was still dropping like a stone, and had former MotoGP rider Danilo Petrucci all over the back of him now.

Just over half race distance, and Bautista was managing the softer rear tyre to perfection and had now pulled the gap out to 1.1s. Disaster again for poor Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), who has to retire once again due to a mechanical issue. Meanwhile Lowes was having a second wind, and cut up the inside of Bassani into turn twelve to take 4th briefly, before the fiery Italian snapped back to retake the position. A bad day for Scott Redding who comes into pit lane visible seething, smashing his screen off, before storming back into the BMW garage, having to retire due to a mechanical issue.

WorldSBK Round 2 Mandalika Race 1 Picture courtesy of WorldSBK

With 8 laps to go, Bautista was showing no signs of grip loss, and put in another fastest lap of a 1:32.803. Meanwhile Petrucci used all of his racing experience and got through on Rea to move into 6th. A struggling Rea had to continue to defend as he had Xavi Vierge all over him now.

With 6 laps to go Vierge finally made his move on Rea getting by to move into 7th. The six times world champion was now in 8th, and it wasn’t going well. Petrucci continued to make up places, and then went through on Lowes to move back into 5th. Excellent ride for the former MotoGP rider considering he’d never been to this track before. The defending continued for Rea, and next up it was Vd Mark eyeing up a sorry looking Kawasaki. Meanwhile at the front, Toprak held a gap of 1 second to his team mate behind in 3rd.

With 4 laps left, Aegerter (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) was finding great late race pace, and was now up to 10th, and gaining on the riders ahead of him. The Dutchman Vd Mark eventually got past Rea to move into 8th, and now the Swiss rider Aegerter was all over the back of Rea. A terrible day for both Kawasaki’s as Vierge also went through on Lowes to move into 6th.

With only 3 laps to go positions were as follows: 1. Bautista 2. Toprak 3. Locatelli 4. Bassani 5. Petrucci 6. Vierge 7. Lowes 8. Vd Mark 9. Rea 10. Aegerter.

Next lap and Vd Mark was having a great ride, and moved first past Lowes and then past Vierge and up into 6th.

Last lap and Domi Aegerter in a fantastic move, took both Kawasaki’s into turn two to move into 8th. Safe to say a disaster for factory Kawasaki with Rea in 9th and Lowes in 10th. However the same could not be said for Alvaro Bautista, who came across the line to take the win, unbeaten so far this season with 4 out of 4 wins. Toprak 2nd, Locatelli 3rd, Bassani 4th, Petrucci 5th, Vd Mark 6th, Vierge 7th, Aegerter 8th, Rea 9th, Lowes 10th.

Result top 5:

  1. Bautista ( Racing Ducati)
  2. Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK Team)
  3. Locatelli (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK Team)
  4. Bassani (Motocorsa Racing Ducati)
  5. Petrucci (Barni Spark Racing Ducati)

Championship top 3:

  1. Bautista – 87 pts
  2. Locatelli – 50
  3. Razgatlioglu – 43



Round 1 WorldSBK, Phillip Island, Australia, Race 2

The earlier Superpole race saw Alvaro Bautista ( Racing Ducati) claim his second win of the weekend, followed by team mate Rinaldi, and Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK Team).

WorldSBK Philip Island Round 1 Race 2 Picture courtesy of WorldSBK

Conditions were thankfully dry for the start of race 2, with an air temperature of 20 degrees Celsius, and track temperatures in the mid 30’s,  with the sun shining down on the track.

Lights out then for race 2 and it was Bautista with the hole shot into turn 1, followed by team mate Rinaldi, and the Yamahas of Locatelli and Toprak, with Bassani in 5th. Rea was again looking to make early in roads from his disappointing 7th place grid position, knowing that allowing Bautista any distance at the front would surely spell danger.

Next lap and positions were as follows: 1. Bautista 2. Rinaldi 3. Locatelli (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK Team) 4. Bassani (Motocorsa Ducati) 5. Rea 6. Toprak 7. Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 8. Lecuona (Honda HRC) 9. Petrucci (Barni Spark Racing Ducati) 10. Oettl (Team GoEleven Ducati).

With 19 laps of 22 remaining, Bautista wasn’t in the mood to hang around, and was already working on extending his lead at the front. He now held a gap of 0.7s, with a group of 8 riders forming behind, the racing was much closer in the dry conditions.

Next lap, and it was first Rea to move through on Bassani into Doohan’s, followed by Toprak, the racing was heating up. Meanwhile out in front the two Ducatis were looking quick. Locatelli, 3rd, held a gap of 1.6s to Rea behind in 4th, while Lecuona, 8th, held a gap of 1.6s to Petrucci in 9th.

Next lap and rookie Aegerter (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team), who had been looking aggressive all weekend, tried to force a move up the inside of Petrucci into MG corner. However the Italian snapped back to hold his position.

With 15 laps remaining, Lowes got good drive down the straight and blasted past Toprak to take 5th. The Kawasaki team mates were now 4th and 5th. However disappointment again on the other Kawasaki for Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), who initially went into the pits, and then returned on track only to crash a few moments later. Not the return to racing that Sykes would have wanted.

Next lap and things were heating up with a 5 way battle for 4th between Rea, Lowes, Toprak, Bassani and Lecuona. Bassani in particular was looking aggressive, and made contact with Lecuona, tearing his wing off the fairing in the process.

With 13 laps to go, Lowes decided to make a move on his team mate, and dived through on Rea, holding the position. Meanwhile it was getting spicy between Bassani and Lecuona who once again collided, and this time gave Oetll the opportunity to come through into 7th, which he took with open arms.

Next lap, and at the front Bautista held a gap of 1.9s, and as he had all weekend, was looking comfortable. Meanwhile Toprak had come through on Lowes briefly, and Lowes returned the favour to retake 5th. Positions were now changing almost every corner, and it was reminiscent of a Moto3 race. Current positions were as follows: 1. Bautista 2. Rinaldi 3. Locatelli 4. Rea 5. Lowes 6. Toprak 7. Bassani 8. Oetll 9. Lecuona 10. Petrucci.

WorldSBK Philip Island Round 1 Race 2 Picture courtesy of WorldSBK

With just over half race distance covered, Lowes again made a move on Rea into turn 1, powering up the inside and making the move stick. Meanwhile the constant battling of riders behind, had allowed the leading three riders to pull clear of the rest. Locatelli now held a gap of 3.4s to Lowes behind in 4th.

With 9 laps to go, Bassani used the top end speed of his Ducati to blast past Toprak down the straight and into turn 1 to take 6th. Meanwhile Rea had fought back to retake 4th ahead of his team mate, Lowes who dropped back into 5th. Further back, Aegerter again tried the same move on Petrucci into MG corner, and again the experienced Italian was able to defend his position. Further ahead Lowes wouldn’t be put off, and again passed Rea to retake 4th.

With 7 laps remaining it was quickly becoming a blow for blow scrap between Kawasaki team mates, Lowes and Rea and it was the former who would retake 4th, with Lowes back in 5th. Meanwhile further back there was a 3 way battle for 13th between Gardner (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team), Vd Mark (BMW Motorrad) and Redding (BMW Motorrad).

Next lap and Bassani was showing good late race pace, and had got past both Kawasakis to end up 4th, Rea was in 5th. Then huge drama as Lowes lost the front end of his bike braking into turn 4, collecting an unsuspecting Toprak in the process, and sending them both down and out of the race. Toprak was clearly upset about that incident, which he obviously had no control of.

With 4 laps of 22 remaining, the three at the front would not be caught unless there was some incident. Positions were as follows: 1. Bautista 2. Rinaldi 3. Locatelli 4. Bassani 5. Rea 6. Oettl 7. Lecuona 8. Aegerter 9. Petrucci.

Next lap and Oetll had now passed Rea to take 5th, the German was having a fantastic weekend. Rea however was suffering from rear tyre grip, and was trying to hold off Lecuona who was now right behind him. The Honda has better drive out of turn 12, and it allowed Lecuona to blast past Rea into 6th. In front Bassani held a gap of 0.2s to Oettl in 5th. Meanwhile further back Gardner moved up into 11th, holding off the BMW factory team mates of Redding, and Vd Mark.

Last lap and Bautista made no mistake, crossing the line to take his 3rd win of the weekend, a clean sweep of wins. Rinaldi 2nd, Locatelli 3rd, Bassani 4th, Oettl 5th, Lecuona 6th, Aegerter 7th, Rea 8th, Petrucci 9th, Vierge 10th.

Result top 5:

  1. Bautista ( Racing Ducati)
  2. Rinaldi ( Racing Ducati)
  3. Locatelli (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK Team)
  4. Bassani (Motocorsa Ducati)
  5. Oettl (Team GoEleven Ducati)

Championship top 3:

  1. Bautista – 62 pts
  2. Locatelli – 34
  3. Rea – 31

Round 1 WorldSBK, Phillip Island, Australia, Race 1

We ended last years season here in Phillip Island, with Alvaro Bautista                    ( Ducati) being crowned the champion. The paddock have returned to the Island for the start of the new 2023 season.

WorldSBK Philip Island Round 1 Picture courtesy of WorldSBK

Superpole saw Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK) claim top spot with an unbeaten time of 1:29.400, followed by Alvaro Bautista in 2nd, and former double SSP champion, and current SBK rookie, Dominique Aegerter (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK) in 3rd.

Conditions for race 1 were less than ideal compared to the earlier Superpole, with the rain coming in, the track was soaking wet, and the race was declared a wet race. Every rider opted for full wet tyres in the tricky conditions.

Lights out then for the first time this season, and it was Bautista quickest off the line with the hole shot into turn 1, followed by Rea (KRT Kawasaki), Toprak, Lowes (KRT Kawasaki), and Aegerter in 5th. Rea looked keen from the off, and made a decisive move on Bautista into MG, cutting up the inside of the reigning champion to take over the lead. Fellow KRT Kawasaki team mate Alex Lowes replied in kind by blazing around the outside of Toprak over Lukey Heights, and up into 3rd, Toprak 4th.

Next lap and positions were as follows: 1. Rea 2. Bautista 3. Lowes 4. Razgatlioglu 5. Locatelli (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK) 6. Bassani (Motocorsa Ducati) 7. Aegerter 8. Gardner (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK) 9. Lecuona (Honda HRC) 10. Petrucci (Barni Spark Racing Ducati).

Drama then for the Dutchman Vd Mark (BMW Motorrad) who had a nasty looking high side into the Hay shed corner, his bike was mangled, and his start to the season was over. Meanwhile at the front Rea and Bautista were both checking out, and had already pulled out a decent lead.

With 20 laps of 22 remaining, it was Rea who set the fastest time in the tricky conditions with a new lap time of 1:42.5, and held a gap of 1.3s over Bautista behind in 2nd.

With 18 laps to go, Toprak struck back at Lowes, and blasted past the Kawasaki down the straight and into turn 1 to retake 3rd. The Yamaha R1 looking like it had extra grunt this season. Further back the former AMA rider, and MotoGP rider, Danilo Petrucci was having a decent start to his season, and was up into 9th. At the front Rea had extended his lead to 1.6s.

Next lap and Scott Redding (BMW Motorrad) moved through on rookie, and former MotoGP rider, Remi Gardner to move up into 10th. Back in the paddock once again, the former WorldSBK champion Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) had to retire due to a mechanical issue.

Lap 6 of 22, and Bautista was slowly finding his rhythm and was making inroads on the gap to Rea, the gap now cut to 0.9s.

With 14 laps to go, Bautista had now caught right up to Rea, with the gap only 0.6s. Toprak 3rd, Lowes 4th, Locatelli 5th, Bassani 6th.

Next lap and Bautista made his move on Rea into turn 3, Rea couldn’t respond and Bautista took over the lead. Rea however had been steadily losing time, and the commentator noted that he had been having to shut off the throttle on gear shifts, seemingly a problem with the quick shift, or automatic blipper. Bad news then for the Kawasaki team on their return to racing.

Half race distance, and Rea was fighting incredibly hard to stay in contact with Bautista, you could notice him ringing the throttle now, but the electronic issue was also affecting his traction. Positions were as follows: 1. Bautista 2. Rea 3. Toprak 4. Lowes 5. Locatelli 6. Bassani 7. Redding 8. Lecuona 9. Petrucci 10. Vierge (Honda HRC).

With 8 laps remaining it was drama for Alex Lowes who had a high speed crash into turn 2, and he was lucky to be able to walk away from it, however his race was over. Meanwhile further back it was the German, Oettl (Team Goeleven Ducati) 11th, Gardner 12th, Rinaldi ( Ducati) 13th, and Gerloff (Bonovo Action BMW) 14th.

With 6 laps to go Rea was still fighting with his bike, and trying to reduce a gap of 1.8s to Bautista in front.

WorldSBK Philip Island Round 1 Picture courtesy of WorldSBK

Next lap and Iker Lecuona moved through on Redding to take over 6th, Meanwhile after his fantastic superpole to start in 3rd, Aegerter was now all the way back in 13th, finding the conditions challenging.

On lap 20 of 22, and as he was for so much of last season, Bautista was firmly in control of the lead, and looked like he would have the win sealed up. Rea was behind in 2nd, with Toprak in 3rd.

Last lap and Bautista made no mistake and crossed the line to take the first win of the new season. Rea 2nd, Toprak 3rd, Locatelli 4th, Bassani 5th, Lecuona 6th, Vierge 7th, Petrucci 8th, Redding 9th, Gerloff 10th.

Result top 5:

  1. Bautista ( Ducati)
  2. Rea (KRT Kawasaki)
  3. Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK)
  4. Locatelli (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK)
  5. Bassani (Motocorsa Ducati)

Championship top 3:

  1. Bautista – 25pts
  2. Rea – 20
  3. Razgatlioglu – 16


McAMS Yamaha promote Tim Neave to British Superbikes for 2023

The latest news from the British Superbike paddock sees McAMS Yamaha announce the promotion of Tim Neave from National Superstock 1000 to British Superbikes for 2023.

After an injury riddled season aboard an R1 for the team in the National Superstock 1000 category which saw a broken pelvis ruin Neave’s season, McAMS have decided they had seen enough to warrant signing Neave into their superbike squad in the vacated seat of Tarran Mackenzie.

With Mackenzie, the former British Superbike Champion of 2021 having announced he is moving on to pastures new for 2023, this leaves the Fleetwood based squad in a position to take a chance on the young BSB rookie. Neave joins the team to learn and develop alongside current Yamaha Veteran rider, Jason O’Halloran.

Steve Rogers and Tim Neave – McAMS Yamaha

Neave said: “To get the call up to ride for McAMS Yamaha is a dream come true. When I signed to ride for the team last year, in the back of my mind I was thinking if I could do a really good job on the Superstock bike and a seat became available, it would be the dream but I didn’t think it would actually happen!

“Raceways are one of, if not the best teams in the paddock – they’ve certainly won more races than anyone else in recent years so I can’t think of a better team to step up into BSB with. I loved riding the R1 Superstock bike, it really suited me as a rider and from what Jason has told me, the Superbike has similar characteristics so I’m looking forward to getting out on it for the first time. BSB is one of the toughest classes in racing, but I’ll give it my everything to make sure this opportunity isn’t wasted on me.”

Team Owner Steve Rodgers commented: “When Tim joined the team to race the Superstock bike in 2022 we were all really impressed by him. Not only was he super quick straightaway, but his attitude and the way he went about things meant that he fit in to the team immediately. There’s no doubt had the Knockhill accident, which wasn’t his fault, not occurred, he’d have continued to fight for the Superstock title.

“When he was fit, he was super-fast on the R1 and the Superstock bike has a lot of similarities to the Superbike, including the fact that we couldn’t run any traction control on the stocker, so the jump isn’t as big as it is with some other manufacturers. There’s still a lot to learn, but we are confident he’ll pick it up and look forward to seeing what he can achieve.”

Tim Neave – McAMS Yamaha

Vickers Given a Golden Opportunity to Shine with OMG Racing Yamaha in British Superbikes

In a surprise twist to the British Superbike silly season, championship winning OMG Racing Yamaha have announced former Superstock 600 Champion, Ryan Vickers will be joining them for the 2023 and 2024 seasons in a 2-year deal.

Ryan Vickers – OMG Racing Yamaha

After a frustrating season aboard FHO’s BMW M1000RR Vickers has surprised Superbike fans by bagging what many believe to be one of the best and most sought-after rides on the grid. With newly crowned BSB Champion Bradley Ray rumoured to be stepping up to the World Superbike Series next year, Ryan Vickers, his personal team and OMG Racing have pounced on the opportunity to put themselves in the spotlight again and have some big boots to fill.

Riding alongside 2022 race winner and 6th place finisher overall Kyle Ryde, I’ve no doubt the pairing will be expected to perform from the get-go after the team have become accustomed to British Superbike success. Ryde more so than Vickers as there will be an adjustment period to be taken into account, hence the 2 year deal to allow Vickers to settle in a find his feet. You also have to bear in mind the calibre of riders he will be up against next year in British Superbikes. Staying on the bike and being inside the Top 10 has to be Vickers’ first priority in year 1. If he can regain the confidence he oozed in his days with the Lee Hardy Racing team, where Ryan was a regular runner inside the top 6 during races, success, podiums and potential race wins will come at some point.

Vickers has experience on Yamaha machinery from his championship winning season aboard an R6 in 2018 before debuting in Superbikes, though personally I’m unsure as to whether data and riding styles from a stock R6 can translate to a British Superbike spec R1 with instant results. Stranger things have happened. We have seen high calibre riders struggle on BMW machinery due to the integral characteristics of the bike whereas the R1 has long been seen as the friendliest bike to ride being it’s such an allrounder, it could just be that this is the move Vickers needs to settle things down, renew his confidence and start bringing some BSB trophies, if not in 2023 then definitely in 2024.

The one thing Vickers has been universally commended on, when life became tough in the FHO Racing BMW camp, his attitude towards the team, improving himself and the bike were never in doubt. On and off the bike his character has shone through.

Good luck to him I say. Kudos on his negotiating skills and well done that man for being brave enough to go even further down the rabbit hole to find himself and chase his dream. Vickers could easily have gone back to a series he has had success on (i.e. 600’s) but it takes a brave man to dig in and crack on for another year. Congratulations to both Ryan and OMG Racing for putting together what will hopefully be a belter of a lineup for 2023.

Ryan Vickers – OMG Racing Yamaha

On the move, Vickers said: “I’m so pleased to be given the opportunity to ride what I and many others perceive to be the best bike on the Bennetts British Superbike Championship grid, with a team have that have impressed a huge number of people by winning the championship.

“My love of Yamaha stems from my Superstock 600 Championship win onboard an R6, so I’m looking forward to gelling with the R1, and being able to deliver OMG Racing the level of success they’ve become used to.

“I can’t thank Alan [Gardner] and Paul [Curran] enough for their belief in my abilities, and I’ll be working harder than ever to give them the results the team deserve. I appreciate that to step into the boots of the Championship winner is a big ask, and Brad has set the bar high, but I relish the challenge and I’m excited for what I’m hoping will be my best season yet.”

Alan Gardner, OMG Racing Team Owner said: “Ryan is a rider that OMG Racing have had their eye on for quite a while and has really impressed with both his performance on-track, and his attitude off it.

“He’s a well-known and liked character within the paddock and has proven himself to be a rider that will go above and beyond to constantly improve and better his lap times and ability, and that fits perfectly with us and our goals moving forward.

“We plan on pulling no punches in our pursuit of our second championship victory in 2023, and with both Ryan and Kyle on board our Yamaha R1s, are feeling strong as we move into our sixth BSB season.”

Paul Curran, OMG Racing Team Principal commented: “I’m really looking forward to working with Ryan, and he’s a rider that I’ve admired for quite a while. His success on the R6 in the Superstock 600 Championship back in 2018 demonstrates his comfort on Yamahas, and from experience we know this normally translates well to the R1 – you only have to look at Brad [Ray]’s results and progression to see that.

“His drive and positivity will see him slot perfectly into the team, and I’m confident he’ll be at the sharp end of the grid from the off.

“We head out to Cartagena in a few short weeks, and we’re all looking forward to giving both Ryan and Kyle the opportunity to get some track time under their belts. I have no doubt that Ryan will get his head around the bike very quickly and we’re really looking forward to seeing what he can do.

Buchan Bound for BMW Bounce-Back in BSB 2023

Synetic BMW Motorrad by TAS Racing have announced the continuation of their professional relationship with Danny Buchan.

Danny Buchan – Synetic BMW Image

Hoping third time’s a charm for Buchan after 2 frustrating years on BMW machinery, the popular Essex rider is hoping for a strong step in the right direction on board the M1000-RR motorcycle from odd wins to frequent wins.

TAS racing haven’t kept hold of the factory support of BMW for 2023, which goes the way of colleagues and competitors, FHO Racing BMW as they were recently named the officially supported team. This may not be a bad thing in the long run. Only the team themselves truly know the level of input BMW have in the day to day running, but TAS Racing have a long history of running at the front of the British Superbikes and remain fully focused on returning to winning ways and good luck to them!

Danny Buchan – Synetiq BMW Image

Speaking about the announcement, Danny Buchan said: – “If you look at the steps we made this season from the midway-point through to the end, it was positive progression. Wins at Cadwell Park yes, that was a superb weekend for everyone involved, but two podiums at Brands – which is possibly my weakest circuit on the calendar – just proves the strength and ongoing development of the TAS prepared M 1000 RR package. That’s a massive credit to the team.

“Taking that all into consideration, it was a ‘no-brainer’ for me to stay for 2023 and while we always talk about bike development, there are a few things I need to improve myself, so the hard work has already begun. It’s inspiring to have also seen the launch of the new and improved M 1000 RR, so I can’t wait to hook up with the boys and get going.”

Team Principal Philip Neill commented: – “After two strong seasons together, whilst developing the SYNETIQ BMW M 1000 RR, we are really looking forward to a third year with Danny. We have shown we can win races together and the aim will be to build on that and challenge for the championship in 2023.”

We are still awaiting announcement of their second rider but the rumour that Leon Haslam will join the team is gathering momentum. As with all rumours and silly season speculations, until they are officially announced, they are not always to be taken seriously.


Bradley Perie promoted to British Superbikes with Lee Hardy Racing

BSB Day at Motorcycle Live was a great time for Lee Hardy Racing to announce their plans for 2023, with the unveiling of Bradley Perie.

Bradley Perie and Lee Hardy – Lee Hardy Racing Kawasaki UK Image

A successful 2022 season in British Supersport 600 saw Appleyard Macadam Racing Yamaha’s, Perie take no less than 7 wins against a dominant Mar-Train Yamaha rider, Jack Kennedy. Kennedy went on the clinch the title by 9th round at Oulton Park then stepped up to complete the rest of the season in Superbikes to get a head start on 2023. Perie secured the runner up position in convincing style over nearest competitor and teammate, Harry Truelove.

Shoulda, Woulda, Coulda could be said for the 4 DNF’s in 2022 as without those, Brad would have been well on for the championship trophy and could have challenged Kennedy to the final flag, but as they say “if my Aunt had balls, she would be my Uncle” yada yada yada.

Clearly seeing the potential in the young Lancashire based rider, Lee Hardy Racing have signed Perie to step up to the series and make his debut under the teams push for a younger rider in a so called “youth movement”.

There seems to be a push from some of the BSB teams to start the process of finding the next wave of British Superbike stars. In 2022 Lee Hardy was partnered with Leon Haslam who runs the Affinity Sports Academy, which is dedicating itself to aiding the movement, training and bringing through of new talent. However, after what can only be described as a frustrating year for the team, a new plan of attack for 2023 has been laid and Perie is at the forefront of the team’s plans.

Bradley Perie – Yamaha Racing UK Image

It looks like the team has an option for 2024 too in their contract with Perie, but that is only hinted at in the statement below from Lee Hardy. Nothing has been confirmed as to the length of the contract, but no doubt will become clear in time.

Perie said: – “I’m grateful and excited to be making my debut Superbike season with the renowned Lee Hardy Racing team, onboard the proven Kawasaki ZX-10RR along with the Team Green family. It’s a dream come true so I can’t wait to get the ball rolling with the first test in 2023.”

Lee Hardy, Team Principal said: – “I’m very excited to announce our new signing Bradley and particularly keen to secure Bradley for not only 2023, but it’s also important to retain Bradley for a second season. This opportunity will give Bradley a stable situation to learn the Kawasaki ZX-10RR Superbike without the pressure of having to try to succeed in year one.

“Bradley is a complete rookie to the Superbike championship however he has shown me great potential and certainly is a rider that has caught my eye. It is so nice to revert back to the roots of Lee Hardy Racing and give young talent an opportunity to develop and hopefully succeed within BSB.

“There are many things you need to consider as a team owner when you are looking at a new venture, one thing that definitely helped me make my decision was the opening up of the Spanish testing again. This is a great opportunity for Bradley to throw his leg over the 2023 Kawasaki ZX-10RR and complete many laps in a relaxed environment, it’s not just about learning the bike, this will also give Bradley the chance to understand his new crew and get comfortable working with a new team.”

Ross Burridge, Head of Marketing & Racing Department at Kawasaki UK commented: – “Lee runs a great outfit that has not just lots of experience with the ZX-10RR machine but also with developing young talent, almost taking Jake Dixon to Championship glory in 2018.

“We have every faith that Bradley and the team will click from the off, and maximum effort will be put in from all sides to ensure a smooth and successful transition from Supersport to Superbike for Bradley. It’s important that teams start to give young up-and-coming riders a chance in Superbike, and with Lee doing just that, we are right behind him.”

Danny Kent joins LKR Racing for 2023

LKR Racing Honda will be a new addition to the 2023 British Superbike grid.

A partnership between Dorset based, Plant Machinery company, D & P Lovel Limited and Danny Kent will see them join the series and run their own team in the BSB paddock. The team will field the CBR1000RR-R SP Fireblade for their push on privateer ‘bragging rights’ and championship success in BSB while a Yamaha R6 beckons for younger brother, Keiron Kent on his debut in the Junior Superstock 600 category.

LKR Racing Honda – Official BSB Image

Danny Kent said: – “First of all I would like to say a big thank you to the whole Lovell family. I’m looking forward to the new project. D&P Lovell have been a personal sponsor of mine for a few years now and I know they don’t do anything halfhearted.

“I’m under no illusion that this isn’t going to be easy, but I believe we have the right people to do the job properly. I’m also excited to change manufacturer to Honda as it is a proven race-winning bike. I would like to say a massive thank you to everyone involved in LKR and I can’t wait to get started.”

Kieran Kent said: – “I am super excited to start my debut season in the Junior Superstock Championship next year. It’s definitely going to be a year of learning, but I am more than ready for the challenge ahead.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Allen and his family at D&P Lovell, my family and all my sponsors for believing in me and taking my career to the next step. I wouldn’t be in this position without them and I am very grateful. I can’t wait to get out testing on my Yamaha R6 early next year and get the season underway.”

Team Owner Allen Lovell concluded: – “D&P Lovell Ltd are thrilled to announce the launch of LKR, a newly formed Superbike and Junior Superstock team for 2023. Having been involved with motorcycles for over 30 years, providing vehicles and personal sponsorship for four years, we are well placed to support riders across the different classes. We wish our riders and sponsors a successful 2023.”

Keiron and Danny Kent – LKR Racing

British Superbike Structure Update for 2023

Bennetts British Superbike series unveil new points system and scrap the Showdown 8 positions.

Most fans would agree the biggest news coming out of “BSB Day” at Motorcycle Live was the shakeup to the championship for 2023. The Showdown element of the season is still present, albeit with a different context. The Showdown Finale has been added into the mix and podium credits are now a thing of the past. To clarify… It is not only 1st to 8th position that could win the championship.

The Traditional Top 8 Showdown is Cancelled.

Whoever scores the most points over the season, will lift the BSB title. The changes to the points hope to provide a closer season overall, with bigger gains available for success in the Showdown rounds. Effectively stopping someone going on a winning streak over the season and building a massive lead, aka Leon Camier 2009 on the Airwaves Yamaha 

A hat trick of victories in any particular round, would see a rider gain a minimum of 6 points over their rivals. Under the previous system, it would have been a minimum of 15 points advantage. The idea being when you get to the Showdown stages, the gaps are much closer than previous years but there doesn’t need to be any intervention from the series to manufacture a title battle down to the wire. Hopefully it pans out that way naturally. We have seen many a year where teams struggle at the start of the season only to dial the bike in at the Showdown point when they have unfortunately missed the cut.

As with any changes, we need to see how it will pan out and give the series credit where it’s due, they have clearly listened to the “Anti-Showdown” brigade. This is as close to a return to a traditional championship as we will see for now and I for one welcome the change. There will be no more shouts of “Don’t race the Showdown 8” or “Let them do a race on their own” as was seen after the fallout from Jason O’Halloran’s disastrous exit from Race 1 and 2 of Oulton Park during the showdown in 2022.

British Superbike Updated Points Structure

The main season is the same as previous years. From the 1st round at Silverstone, to the 8th round at Cadwell Park, the points system will be changed to: – 1st to 15th – 18-16-14-12-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 points.

The Showdown starts at Round 9, Oulton Park in September where the points system will change to: – 1st to 15th – 25-22-20-18-16-14-12-10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 points

The Showdown Finale at Brands Hatch, for round 11 of the season: – 1st to 15th – 35-30-27-24-22-20-18-16-14-12-10-8-6-4-2 points.

Bennetts British Superbike Championship Series Director Stuart Higgs commented: “Following the announcement of our partnership renewal with Bennetts, we can also unveil our new Championship format for 2023.

“This represents only the third time in the series’ long history that we have adapted the Championship format, following consultation with teams and riders.

“The Showdown format from 2010-2022 has served the championship well and provided some historic and edge of the seat outcomes but we feel it’s right to evolve the format.

“The new format will recognise ‘season long performance’ and ideally create the opportunity for more teams and riders to remain in mathematical title contention and maintain the crescendo of competition that is seen many other sports disciplines.”

British Superbikes Calendar for 2023


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