Lorenzo Zanetti is coming back to ride with Celtic HSBK Racing in MotoAmerica Superbike October 9-11 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Italian rider is bringing reinforcements.
Zanetti, a veteran racer with experience in the FIM Superbike and Supersport World Championships and a current test rider for Ducati Corse’s Superbike testing program, filled in for Celtic HSBK Racing’s injured PJ Jacobsen at August 28-30 at Ridge Motorsports Park.
Zanetti did well, riding Jacobsen’s Ducati Panigale V4 R (which was much closer to Stock 1000-spec than Superbike-spec) to sixth in Superpole and seventh in Superbike Race One despite running off the tricky and unfamiliar track during the race. He then crashed out of seventh place in Race Two due to an fluid leak on his bike.
At Ridge Motorsports Park, Celtic HSBK Racing co-owner Bobby Shek said he hoped to bring Zanetti back, and in spite of challenges getting travel visas in a timely manner, that is going to happen.
Only this time Zanetti is coming back with a full-on Panigale V4 R Superbike built by Ducati Corse to MotoAmerica specifications with members of Zanetti’s Ducati Corse Superbike test team supporting him.
“Honestly, we’re not looking for [race] results,” Shek told Roadracingworld.com Thursday. “We’re realistic on what it takes to race Superbike. We’re not the kind who thinks just because you get a bike with a fast engine you’re going to go out and win Superbike races. It takes a lot of development [and] we don’t have any.
“We’re just looking at this as trying to gauge what it would take to put a budget together for next year. This will be a realistic test on what level crew and rider and budget we need to race up front.
“We don’t have any realistic experience in Superbike, so this is kind of feeling it out. We’re going to use this round and next round to figure out a budget for next year.”
Having said that, what is the plan for the MotoAmerica season finale October 23-25 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca?
“We’re going to leave that up to Ducati,” said Shek. “It’s a possibility we will get a different rider for Laguna. Zanetti has to miss a [CIV] round to be at Laguna, so they may have someone else riding for him.
“We will be at Laguna for sure and the same Superbike will be at Laguna, as well.”