WorldSBK heads, this weekend, to where it all began at Donington Park, UK
The 2021 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship is heading to the Great British countryside for round four of the season at Donington Park, this weekend.
WorldSBK returns to its birthplace of Donington Park, where it all started back on a cold April Sunday in 1988.
31 years later and the Championship is red hot, with home-hero Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) leading an in-form Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK) by 20 points, but that could all change in what is set to be, as ever, an unpredictable UK Round.
The man in the best form coming into the Prosecco DOC UK Round is Toprak Razgatlioglu, having taken his first 2021 victory last time out, the latest in a string of six consecutive podiums that have consisted of four second places, one third and now a victory.
He also returns to a happy hunting ground at Donington Park, where he achieved a career-first WorldSBK podium by beating Jonathan Rea in 2018 on the final lap of Race 2.
Aiming to bounce back and strike with victory on home soil, Jonathan Rea took all three races at Donington Park in 2019. Whilst the last three races at the track may well have been good to the reigning six-time World Champion, the last three races of recent times were more of a challenge.
Three third places at Misano left Rea wanting more, but when this is a ‘bad’ day at the office, you know his monumental consistency is strong.
Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) needs a resurgence at Donington Park, the circuit where he took a first ever World Championship win at back in 2008’s 125cc World Championship GP.
Three fourth places at Misano leaves Redding 45 points back in the title race, whilst on the other side of the garage, Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) was in sensational form at Misano, with two wins and a second, something he hopes will act as a key change in 2021 after a difficult first two rounds.
There’s one rider who is a Donington Park specialist: Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) is synonymous with the British circuit, having gone unbeaten there from 2013 to 2017’s Race 1, and enjoying 14 podiums from 17 races, an incredible run at the track.
Aiming to make further steps in their quest to close the gap to the top five, Team HRC riders Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam head to a venue they know well, particularly Leon Haslam, who was practically brought up at Donington Park.
For Bautista, he was on the podium at the track in 2019, whilst also taking three podiums across 125cc and 250cc GP racing, of which he was a winner in the former.
The championship standings are as follows:
- Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki) – 149 points
- Toprak Razgatlioglu (Yamaha) – 129 points
- Scott Redding (Ducati) – 104 points
- Alex Lowes (Kawasaki) – 88 points
- Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Ducati) – 82 points
- Garret Gerloff (GRT yamaha) – 59 points
- Michael Van Der Mark (BMW) – 52 points
Finally, the WorldsBK Superbike World Championship, returns from July 2nd to 4th, with the round of UK, at the Donington Park track.
For more info, access the WorldSBK website.