KRT Team Manager Guim Roda discusses the 2022 season so far for riders Rea and Lowes, as well as looking ahead to the future
Four rounds have been completed in the 2022 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship campaign and, with a gap between rounds coming up, team managers from the factory teams have been reviewing their season so far. This time, it is time for Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK’s Guim Roda, Team Manager at KRT, to review his team’s season so far while he also looks ahead to the future with riders Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes.
Kawasaki have taken 10 podiums in the four rounds so far in 2022, all coming from six-time Champion Rea, with half of those coming from visits to the top step of the podium. Rea is currently second in the Championship standings, 36 points back from leader Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati). Teammate Lowes lies seventh in the standings with 75 points to his name after three non-scoring races in the first two rounds of the season. In the Manufacturers’ Championship, Kawasaki are second behind Ducati with just 23 points separating the two.
Reviewing the first four rounds from a team perspective, Roda said: “We started quite well. Our performance was good and the job we did in the winter, we took the benefits at the beginning of the season. Unfortunately, we had a crash at Assen. That’s mainly the difference we have now with Bautista, who started a little bit stronger. We know the skills from Ducati and Bautista weight combination, and they need to ride the bike only in acceleration to make more metres than anybody. I think Jonny is working so hard, Toprak is working so hard so we’re all trying to face this complexity. We are so proud to give a big show and I think it’s one of the best seasons in WorldSBK. I think it’s going to be an amazing season.”
Roda was also able to review the season when talking about riders Rea and Lowes with Roda anticipating Kawasaki to be stronger at other races throughout 2022 after leaving Misano without winning; the first round in 2022 where Rea and Kawasaki have not claimed at least one victory at this season.
Discussing their seasons, Roda said: “It’s a long season, many things can happen. Rea, Bautista and Toprak fight very close every race except here in Misano where Ducati had been so strong. It’s a matter of race track, conditions, a track they know quite well, tyre combinations they had here. It’s like it is. I think we are going to be stronger in other races. We need to see what’s going on. Alex’s is much better than people can see from outside. We are working a lot with him to manage his expectations because he has the potential, he has the speed, it’s a matter of controlling the speed and in time he understands the limit of the bike and how to ride it. It’s a combination of his style and bike characteristics. I think he’s just behind the top three and if he keeps growing his level and consistency, we’re going to have Lowes there soon.”
Roda also eluded to the future, with Rea currently not signed up for the 2023 season. He said: “It’s our idea to continue the same as now because I think it’s working well. The paddock is talking with everybody.”
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