VisionTrack Ducati Ready For Opening Round At Donington
Four months after the planned start of the 2020 Bennetts British Superbike Championship, the opening round will eventually get underway this weekend with defending champions Paul Bird Motorsport in action at Donington Park.
The VisionTrack Ducati pairing of Josh Brookes and Christian Iddon are hoping to get the belated season off to a great start aboard their factory-supported Ducati Panigale V4Rs in the first of just six rounds, all comprising three races, meaning every race is vital for the Cumbrian-based team.
The team undertook a comprehensive test programme in Spain in early Spring before the COVID-19 pandemic struck meaning it was June before the new machines could be rolled out again in anger with private tests at Croft and Knockhill. Last week’s official test at Donington Park also gave them vital data going into the weekend’s opening triple header at the same track.
2015 BSB champion and runner-up to teammate Scott Redding last year, Australian ace Brookes stays with the Penrith team for a second year and will be looking to add to the ten victories he took last year. Meanwhile new recruit Christian Iddon, a double BSB Rider’s Cup champion, goes for his maiden BSB victory after a couple of injury-hit seasons in recent years.
Josh Brookes: “The focus in testing was to experiment in order to improve what is already a brilliant package so now that’s over, we will start with a refined set up and stick to what we know works. Our Ducatis were very competitive at Donington last year so I’m confident especially having found a few things in testing which work better. The shortened season and three-race format is different for everyone and we have a new Pirelli tyre to use also so it should be a fair and interesting fight. We’ve all had enough waiting around so I’m ready to get cracking but it’s just a shame we won’t be racing in front of the fans just yet.”
Christian Iddon: “It’s been such a long time since I started a race, I’ve never known such a delay, but we all know the reasons for that and being honest, I’m a little apprehensive. The shortened series will be very exciting, and you need to be on it from the start. I know from racing against them last year, the Ducatis are fantastic around Donington so I hope to take advantage of that, although we do need to find the final piece of the jigsaw which we didn’t manage at the test. Once we find that good base setting, we’ll be OK so I’m hoping for a solid weekend which will allow me to push on in the remaining rounds.”
The revised calendar for the Bennetts British Superbike Championship will be over six rounds, all featuring three races making 18 rounds in total.
Aug 7/9 Rounds 1/2/3 Donington Park (National Circuit)
Aug 21/23 Rounds 4/5/6 Snetterton
Sept 4/6 Rounds 7/8/9 Silverstone (National Circuit)
Sept 18/20 Rounds 10/11/12 Oulton Park
Oct 2/4 Rounds 13/14/15 Donington Park (GP Circuit)
Oct 16/18 Rounds 16/17/18 Brands Hatch (GP Circuit)
Due to a ruling last week by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS), which defined the Bennetts British Superbike Championship an ‘Elite Sport’, in line with the government’s pathway for Elite Sport, it is currently not possible to allow spectators to attend. This is despite the organisers, MSV’s comprehensive Covid-Secure procedures for keeping customers and staff safe.