WSBK – WSBK Guide: teams, drivers and challenges for the 2012 season – Honda: an under-exploited potential


WSBK guide: teams, drivers and challenges for the 2012 season

WSBK - WSBK Guide: teams, drivers and challenges for the 2012 season - Honda: an under-exploited potential

The World Superbike Championship (WSBK) is playing its 25th season this year! Site will cover the events almost live every Sunday, but invites you to discover now the forces in the presence of the WSBK 2012.

Practical Guide.

Honda: an under-exploited potential

Penultimate in the manufacturer’s ranking in 2011, Honda is coming this year with a new version of its CBR1000RR. The model prepared by Ten Kate did not however wait for 2012 to evolve: passed on Öhlins during the 2010 season, the WSBK Fireblade was fitted with the "ride-by-wire" gas management system at the end of last season..

Despite the efforts of the Batavian team and the constant support of Honda Europe, the CBR has only managed to beat the championship references (1198, RSV4 and R1) on too rare occasions: seven times in the last three years. But the lack of success and consistency are not only attributable to the motorcycle, because its riders are also responsible…

Last year for example, the arrival of Ruben Xaus in place of Max Neukirchner did not improve the results of the world n ° 1 (in terms of production of motorcycles in the world). At the end of a disappointing first half of the season punctuated by four Top 10s, the No. 111 fell again in the race and got injured.

The official Honda team did not force Ruben to get back on the handlebars as soon as possible and preferred to give Alex Lowes a chance, without more success. So again all hopes were on Jonathan Rea and once again the Northern Irishman missed the boat..

Author of a promising 2010 season – it was enough to fill in the white results in 2011 to aim for the title -, "JR" saw his hopes soar during a fall (at more than 200 km / h!) On the Misano route. Removed from the circuits throughout the summer, Jonathan Rea finally had to settle for 9th place overall.

In 2012 "I want to reach the Top 3, but my goal is clearly to win the championship", warns Johnny who will find his favorite No. 65. Already, unlike the previous off-season (rain in Miller and Portimao, cold in Aragon), Jonathan was able to perform real tests under the Qatari and then Australian sun.

In mid-January, Rea and his team were at Phillip Island and the race simulations were really good according to them. "I think we have a bike with good set-up to start 2012"Jonathan added. Will his fourth season riding the Fireblade be the right one? ?

This year, the second rider of the Honda Ten Kate team – still sponsored by Castrol but to a lesser extent – is a living legend, since he is the last 250 cc Grand Prix world champion (2009 therefore), title obtained by the way on a Honda !

Hiroshi Aoyama arrives in the WSBK arena after two painful years in MotoGP: his first season in the premier class was marred by a fractured vertebra from the fifth Grand Prix, while his second was made discreet and then terribly painful by his teammate in the within Team Gresini, the dreaded and late Marco Simoncelli.

We therefore hope that Hiroshi’s smile – usually omnipresent on his face – will light up the Superbike championship this year, and that his keen driving will allow Honda to spice up the constructors’ championship..

Finally, if the departure of MotoGP n ° 4 deprives Japanese fans of this "national" rider’s championship, it offers consolation to those of the World Superbike, naturally disappointed to see the British Superbike go (among champions Swan Yamaha) another living legend of motorcycle speed: Noriyuki Haga !

Honda team

  • # 4
    Rookie 2012
  • # 65
    WSBK: 71 starts, 23 podiums including 8 wins, 3 poles

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