The FIM has announced the provisional WorldSBK calendar for the 2019 season. The calendar as it stands has 13 rounds, 12 of which have been confirmed. Brno and Laguna Seca are out, while Jerez makes a comeback, with a midsummer round still to be announced. That round could be Kyalami.
The season starts out in a similar vein to previous years, kicking off proceedings at Phillip Island on 24th February, before heading to Buriram in Thailand three weeks later. Three weeks after that, the series lands in Europe, racing first at Aragon in Spain, where WorldSBK and WorldSSP are joined by the WorldSSP300 class, before heading north to Assen for the Dutch round. Four weeks after Assen, the WorldSBK paddock heads south to Italy for the round at Imola.
There has been a fair shake up of the middle of the season, with various rounds reshuffled. From Imola, the paddock heads west again to Spain, this time to Jerez, then drives all the way back again to Misano. From Misano, WorldSBK heads to the UK, for the British round at Donington Park.
After Donington, an additional round has been scheduled, though it is not yet clear where that is. It is widely expected to be Kyalami, though details remain to be finalized. After this round, WorldSBK heads into its long summer break, with no racing through the month of August.
WorldSBK returns in the first week of September, the paddock heading down to Portimao. From there, it is north again to France, and the last round in Europe at Magny-Cours. Then overseas again, first to the San Juan Villicum circuit in Argentina, which made a very successful debut on the calendar this year, and from there to the final race at Losail in Qatar.
With just 13 rounds on the calendar, and a schedule stretching over 8 months, there are significant gaps in the calendar. Most races are 3 to 4 weeks apart, with a break of between 6 and 8 weeks in the summer, depending on whether Kyalami happens or not. Though Dorna hopes to generate more interest with the addition of a third race, a shorter sprint race, for the WorldSBK class, the spread out schedule risks fans losing interest between races.
There are three clashes with the MotoGP calendar, though two of them are in very different time zones, and so race times will not overlap. The Dutch round of WorldSBK on 14th April falls on the same weekend as the US round of MotoGP in Austin, Texas. The final round of WorldSBK in Qatar is to be held on the same weekend as the Australian round of MotoGP in Malaysia. The UK round at Donington is to be held on the same weekend as the German MotoGP round at the Sachsenring, though the WorldSBK race is likely to be held at a much later time, once the MotoGP race has finished.
Below is the provisional 2019 WorldSBK calendar, and below it, a downloadable graphic with all of the races displayed:
MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship
FIM Supersport and Supersport 300 World Championships
2019 provisional calendar, 13 November
|22-24 February||AUS||Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit||X||X|
|15-17 March||THA||Chang International Circuit||X||X|
|5-7 April||ESP||MotorLand Aragón||X||X||X|
|12 -14 April||NED||TT Circuit Assen||X||X||X|
|10-12 May||ITA||Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari di Imola||X||X||X|
|7-9 June||ESP||Circuito de Jerez Ángel Nieto||X||X||X|
|21-23 June||ITA||Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli”||X||X||X|
|5-7 July||GBR||Donington Park||X||X||X|
|19-21 July||TBA *|
|6-8 September||POR||Autódromo Internacional do Algarve||X||X||X|
|27-29 September||FRA||Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours||X||X||X|
|11-13 October||ARG||Circuit San Juan Villicum||X||X|
|24-26 October||QAT **||Losail International Circuit||X||X||X|
*(TBA) To be announced.
**(SC) Schedule change - Round held Thursday – Saturday
2019 OFFICIAL TESTS
- 18-19 February, Australia, Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit (WorldSBK & WorldSSP)
- TBA, Official Mid-season test