The two-time Champion looked back on an incredible season where Alvaro Bautista took the title, while also praising his rivals
The MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship campaign was an unforgettable affair in 2022 after an incredible three-way fight between Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati), Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) and Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK), with Bautista coming out on top. Two-time WorldSBK Champion Troy Corser sat down to discuss the unbelievable season, his favourite rider to watch in WorldSBK, Ducati’s success and speaks about two Australian riders looking to make their mark in the paddock.
After 12 rounds and 36 races, the WorldSBK campaign concluded at the iconic Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit with the action in Australia capping off an unforgettable season. Australia’s Troy Corser, who took the 1996 and 2005 WorldSBK titles, took time out to reflect on the action throughout the season as Ducati ended an 11-year drought for the title, Bautista redeemed himself after 2019 and the titanic trio fought throughout every race in 2022.
Looking back on 2022, Corser said: “It’s been fantastic to watch. To see three riders at that level on different manufacturers, racing so close, and the respect between the riders I see on the track… they’re racing hard but fair, they’re not causing any problems to the other riders. For me, this is what makes WorldSBK so special. For Ducati, with the history of their success in WorldSBK, it’s difficult to believe it’s been 11 years since they won the Championship. I’ve always said Bautista is a great rider and to work with the engineers and personnel in Ducati, I think it really brought the best out of him as a rider and he brought the best out of the team. It’s great. He’s a good character, very nice with the fans and the public and everybody.”
Corser also spoke about six-time Champion Rea, revealing he was the rider he enjoyed watching the most on track. During the Australian Round, Rea equalled Corser’s record for number of starts in WorldSBK on 377. He said: “I’d probably say Jonny Rea. Jonny’s the rider, when I watch, who looks like he’s very in control all the time. I’ve obviously known Jonny for a long, long time from when he first entered the Championship back in WorldSSP back in the day. Spent some time with him also, helping him as much as possible. To actually watch him now, to see what he’s achieved as a rider, is pretty special. It’s another record where I’ve been waiting for it to be broken. For Jonny to meet this milestone, it feels nice. Like I said, he’s a rider that I’ve always enjoyed helping and watching him win and for Jonny to take my record, I guess you could say, it’s good.”
An Australian rider will be on the WorldSBK grid as Remy Gardner joins the GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team from MotoGP™, making his debut in the Championship aboard the Yamaha YZF-R1 machine. Corser spoke about Gardner’s chances when he joins WorldSBK, while also discussing Oli Bayliss who made his debut in WorldSSP this year with the BARNI Spark Racing Team and took a best finish of sixth in tricky conditions at the Circuito Estoril.
Discussing Gardner and Bayliss, Corser said: “For Remy, for me, it’s a little bit difficult to see where he’ll finish in WorldSBK. For sure, he’s a very talented rider, but it’s a different paddock. He has a lot of talent, he’s very fast, but to put a whole season together here, it’s not easy. He’s learnt a lot in MotoGP™ but I think the Superbikes are probably a little bit harder to ride. I wish him all the best. We’ll wait and see, it’s difficult to say before I’ve seen him on a Superbike. Oli Bayliss, for sure, has a lot of pressure, I think, because of his father, Troy’s, success and with the name. He seems quite calm and relaxed. He still needs a bit of experience, a bit more time on the bike. But it’s fantastic to see Troy have his son out there, I’m sure he’s very proud to see his son. I’m sure it’s very stressful also, for him and Kim! I’d like to say he could be another World Champion but there’s a long way to go at the moment for him, just to get results and get experience.”
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