Loris Baz (Ten Kate Yamaha) – the Frenchman switches to the US Superbike Championship due to the lack of an extension offer from the Dutch and other options (© WorldSBK).

Loris Baz and his move to MotoAmerica

The Frenchman announced on February 3rd, 2021: “There will be a lot of new tasks to be tackled. On the one hand, I’ll ride a bike that I haven’t seen before, but I can rely on the support of Ducati. The Italians want to go with them to win the title for a high-level team in the USA. I have a lot to learn, like tires and new tracks. I already know some of my opponents and have raced with pilots like Jake Win and Josh Herrin Almost everyone can aim for the title in Moto2. There will be a time for everything and no challenge scares me. There are methods to learn the tracks and we will plan test days to familiarize myself with them. The clear goal is of course the title.

Loris Baz photographed by us in Misano 2019, the Frenchman was not only one of the fastest WorldSBK riders in recent years, not just in the dry. Due to the reduced sponsorship contributions as a result of the corona pandemic, he was now forced to move to the USA in order not to have to pay extra.

In Troy Corser’s footsteps

Anyone who read the reports of our Superbike history from time to time knows that a foreigner had already achieved this in the 90s. In this respect, Baz will follow in Troy Corser’s footsteps should he really succeed. For more about the earlier years of WorldSBK see our current series and under “History” on this page. With completely different tires and, with the exception of Laguna Seca, completely new tracks, a huge challenge awaits the long French in the coming season. We will report about it regularly and have good contacts on the other side of the “big pond”. It is a pity for Baz that there is no US American WorldSBK run like in previous years. Otherwise he would have had the chance there to compete against his opponents last year in a WildCard bet.

Troy Corser on the Power Horse Ducati – he was by no means the first WorldSBK champ in a private team in 1996, as sometimes falsely claimed. Five years before him, Doug Polen, a US boy for the US private team “Fast by Ferracci”, won the title of the near-series World Cup (© WorldSBK).

Short-term Ducati test in Misano – without Baz

After BMW and the Ducati teams unexpectedly stayed away from the tests in Jerez de la Frontera in picture-perfect weather in mid-November 2020, the Italians were swept away by the horrific weather during the planned test in January. While the people of Munich and inevitably their drivers remain in hibernation, Ducati is now making a new attempt in their homeland. At just over 10 degrees Celsius in Misano, however, this is no fun for teams and drivers. In addition to the works team, at least Tito Rabat, the newcomer to Barni Racing, will be there. The Italians are confident that they will do significantly better with the Moto2 world champion from 2014 than with the miserably failed old champion Melandri in 2020. He even said goodbye prematurely when he had to realize that he simply couldn’t keep up with the best.

Scotty after his crash in the Estoril Superpole in October 2020 at the World Cup final. Instead of a good time, Redding then had to start from the very back and Jonathan Rea secured the title in the first of 3 races back then, although he too had left in the SS. But before that, the Northern Irishman had driven a time that put him a little further up the grid (© WorldSBK).

The official WorldSBK tests until spring

Portimao test: 4th – 5th March
Jerez test: 9th – 10th March (Honda only)
Misano test: 15th – 16th March
Estoril test: 24th – 25th March
Barcelona test: March 31st – 1st April
MotorLand Aragon test: April 12th – 13