The riders criticize most of the “dangerous” circuits


With the COVID-19 pandemic leading to the cancellation of the traditional season opener at Philip Island, the WSBK has added a new replacement race to Most as part of a five-year deal that hands the Czech Republic back on the calendar.

But the inclusion of Most did not go well with the teams, with many believing the track does not live up to WSBK safety standards.

Ducati’s Scott Redding was the most vocal rider in the paddock heading into the weekend, claiming the 4.2km site was not even safe for the British Superbike Championship, let alone an international series like the WSBK.

On Friday night, the 28-year-old reiterated his criticism of Most, saying he was “scared” by the layout of the track and feared an accident “could end his career” in the sport professional automobile.

Redding said that the fact that several riders chose not to participate in FP2 while it was raining illustrates how dangerous the track becomes in these conditions, especially given the limited number of exits and safety barriers.

“When the best guys, factory teams and factory riders don’t go out on the track when it’s raining, there’s a dreadful reason and that reason is that it’s not safe,” he said. he declares. “It’s not [even] safe dry.

“Honestly, that scares me. I go around some corners and it gives me goosebumps, ‘f ***, if I fall here it could be the end of my career.’ You shouldn’t think that in a world level circuit We are not a national championship, we are a world championship, that’s the problem.

“When I was riding a road bike here, I was doing [1m]36-low and now today we do [1m]33-zero and [the difference] it’s not done in the straight line, it’s done in the corners, so I am now approaching the corners with more speed.

“It was dangerous weeks ago when I came here [on a road bike] and now I feel like I wouldn’t stand a chance. And there isn’t even an overhead fence in some of the most dangerous places and I don’t understand why.

“When you hit a wall at 100km / h and the bike passes before you or you pass before the bike, [the barrier] won’t do anything. “

Alvaro Bautista, HRC team

Photo by: Alexander Trienitz

Redding went so far as to question why Most was on the calendar, as the circuit has never been used for a World Championship of this magnitude before.

“I heard for the national championship that they were complaining about this circuit,” he continued. “I’ve heard from people in the paddock, people who work here, so why are we here, that’s my question.

“It is difficult for us to fight against this position because there were 13 riders riding [in FP2 in wet] and everything was fine.

“But the problem is when things go wrong, how bad the damage is. We could have a weekend where everything goes well and my fingers are crossed, everyone goes home safe and sound, but we might have an incident that really wakes up the paddock and thinks ‘what the fuck are we doing?’ We don’t need to be in this position.

“Everyone knows it’s not sure, but we’re always being pushed or chosen to do it.”

Six-time champion Jonathan Rea says he understands the WSBK’s obligation to put together a full schedule, but admitted Most was not the best circuit to visit even when series choices were limited.

“We were very comfortable in the world championship with some incredible tracks,” said the Kawasaki rider. “You can’t rank most circuits with the best circuits in the world, but the reality is we can’t choose where we want to go in Superbike.

“I would love to do 13 races in Qatar or amazing tracks like that, but we can’t. Kudos to Dorna for trying to get a championship in 13 rounds.

“But Most for me isn’t one of the best circuits in the world, but if you’re trying to get 13 laps and please all the team directors and sponsors and keep the show going, we’ve got to come on. tracks that want us and we can ride, so that’s really the way it is. “

Rea’s teammate Alex Lowes said he enjoyed riding the Most circuit after finishing second behind Yamaha’s Toprak Razgatlioglu on Friday, but admitted that there wasn’t much that could be done to make the safer track for bike racing.

“The starts are very close for the speed of the bikes,” he said. “If nothing happens, it’s fine but if you have an accident in a braking zone, some corners are very close [to the barriers].

“There’s nothing they can do about it, but that’s the reason we moved away from those types of tracks.

“We came back because we need tracks to fill the schedule, that’s the reality. But in terms of enjoying the track, the track is really fun to drive.

“Some corners don’t have space. That’s the reality of the situation, we can look and say it’s the same for everyone.”

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