What can Bassani bring to KRT when he switches from Motocorsa Racing?

Tuesday, 10 October 2023 08:30 GMT

Speaking at Portimao, KRT’s current line-up gave their thoughts on Axel Bassani’s move to the Kawasaki factory team for 2024

Plenty of pieces have fallen in the 2024 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship line-up, with Axel Bassani’s (Motocorsa Racing) switch to the Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK for next season announced at Portimao. Speaking during the Portuguese Round, Bassani’s 2024 teammate, Alex Lowes, and the rider he’s replacing, Jonathan Rea, spoke about what the #47 can bring to the Japanese manufacturer when he joins.

BASSANI’S IMPRESSIVE FORM EARNS HIM KRT SEAT: the Italian changes manufacturer

The Italian has spent his three WorldSBK campaigns on the Ducati Panigale V4 R, scoring six podiums so far although a first win still alludes him. He is currently fighting for fifth in the Championship standings and leads rival Michael Ruben Rinaldi ( Racing – Ducati) by 11 points heading into the final round at Jerez. Until the KRT announcement, he was the highest-placed rider in the standings not signed up for 2024 but that changed when he was signed for the team as Yamaha-bound Rea’s replacement.

Speaking on Saturday at the ‘rollercoaster’ Portimao venue, both Alex Lowes and Jonathan Rea spoke about Bassani’s arrival to the team. The #22, who will take on the position as de facto team leader as he enters his fifth campaign with KRT, discussed what the Italian will be able to bring to both the team and manufacturer after three years on Ducati machinery.

LOWES SAYS: “I’m hoping he can bring some of that knowledge and experience to the team”

Talking to the media after Race 1 in Portugal, Lowes said: “I’ll be the experienced guy on the Kawasaki, but Axel’s got a lot of experience. He’s done three seasons in WorldSBK. He’s not a rookie and he has good experience on a good bike. It’s not a factory bike, but he still has access to the electronics and data, and he’ll have so much knowledge of the guy that’s been winning, the benchmark in WorldSBK. It’ll be more important for him to bring that knowledge and try to give it. I’ve been riding the bike for four years. I know where I’m struggling but I’ve already been telling them my opinion. What’s really nice is when somebody from the outside arrives, especially when they’ve been riding one of the strongest packages. I’m hoping he can bring some of that knowledge and experience to the team because that’s what we need now.”

REA’S VIEW: “I saw him in the paddock, and I told him: ‘You’re going to have a fantastic group of guys’…

Bassani takes Rea’s place at KRT with the six-time World Champion leaving green and joining the Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK squad; a move made possible by Toprak Razgatlioglu’s move to the ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team for 2024. Although he didn’t discuss what the #47 could bring to the team, he did reveal details about a conversation the pair had in the paddock after the news was announced.

Rea, like Lowes, was speaking to the media on Saturday at Portimao and said: “I found out one hour before when the team manager sent me a message. It’s a nice opportunity for him to have a factory team. I saw him in the paddock, and I told him: ‘You’re going to have a fantastic group of guys, they’re a really amazing team and people’. He has a job, for sure! He has to work hard, and I wish him the best of luck.”

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