The Italian competed in the WorldSSP Challenge in 2020 and will now race in WorldSBK for the first time in the upcoming season
After spending 2020 competing in the European rounds of WorldSSP, Italian rider Axel Bassani will step up to the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship for 2021 as he joins up with Motocorsa Racing to launch his WorldSBK career. 2021 will therefore mark his debut in the class as he rides Ducati machinery in WorldSBK.
Bassani has spent time in the WorldSBK paddock before having competed in both WorldSSP, STK1000 and STK600. He first appeared on the scene in 2015 in STK600 where he took part in two races, claiming a podium in his second race at Magny-Cours as he finished second; though his potential was shown on debut as he finished in sixth place.
In 2016, the 21-year-old took part in the WorldSSP Challenge Cup and claimed the title in European Supersport, as it was known then, as well as finishing 12th in the overall classification. The following year, he took part in two WorldSSP races and showed his potential yet again with seventh at Misano. Also, in 2017, Bassani got his first Moto2™ experience with four races in the intermediate category as he raced in Argentina, the USA, Spain and France.
In 2018 ad 2019, Bassani competed in the CIV Superbike championship in his native Italy and once again showed his potential with three podiums across two years; claiming fifth in the championship in 2018. He secured one podium in 2018 and two in 2019 including a stunning second place at Misano despite starting in 18th.
The Feltre-born rider said: “I am very happy to start this adventure, this challenge together with the Motocorsa team, Lorenzo Mauri and his collaborator Roberto Terenghi, whom I thank very much for the great opportunity and for the trust they are giving me. I can't wait to start working with the team and to grow over the course of the season as a driver and as a man. At the end of last year, after the last race of the world championship in Estoril, I had the opportunity to do a test with their Ducati V4 RS, but unfortunately, we did few laps due to adverse weather conditions, but already in a few hours of work spent together, I was able to see the great professionalism of this team and their great level of competence, immediately finding myself very well with all the guys.
“It will not be an easy season, there will be many challenges to face, in WSBK no one goes for a walk, but I am sure that with the right working method, with the right consistency and also with the help of Lorenzo, who in this category he has a lot of experience both as a driver and as a team manager, we will be able to get some great results. I especially want to thank my family for always being by my side, my entire work team, which always does the impossible to put me in a position to always give 100% and without whose support we would not be here today. Last but not least, I have to thank all our sponsors, the historical ones who have been with us for a long time and all the new partners, for their fundamental support. By working together, we were able to reach one of our most coveted goals: WorldSBK.”
Team Manager Lorenzo Mauri added: “I am firmly convinced and aware as well as enthusiastic about the great challenge that we will face, as a team and as a rider, competing with official and independent teams with a wealth of important experience resulting from years of participation in the Superbike World Championship. Being a young rookie in the WorldSBK category, we will give you all our commitment, a child of our philosophy of life (always give 110% and try to make the impossible possible). It will be a Championship that will see us grow from race to race, increasing the harmony between the already tested working group with which we have been collaborating for several years and I will put myself at your disposal with all my commitment and experience both on the track and inside the garage.
“There would have been easier ways to go but our character leads us to accept with passion the most difficult challenges, such as taking a rookie and throwing him into the fray. I had the opportunity to see Axel's approach to riding in a short test held last season at the Estoril circuit and I saw in his eyes the hunger to learn and a desire to grow truly out of the ordinary. This is why I decided that he was the right rider for next season, I confirm the most difficult road.”
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