Scott Redding Interview: The Road From MotoGP To BSB To WorldSBK

Scott Redding was at the centre of attention when the British Superbike season began in late April. A MotoGP outcast, the 26 year old was faced with fight or flight. Could he win races? Could he ride a Superbike? Could he turn around his career? Fast forward four months and Redding is still at the centre of attention, only this time it's from WorldSBK teams - looking for the hottest property in BSB.

“The last 12 months have been a crazy turnaround,” admitted Redding. “I've gone from rock bottom to the top of the top in terms of emotions. Coming to BSB after racing for Aprilia has been crazy for me because the end of 2018 was the hardest time I've ever had in racing. Losing the Moto2 title was hard, but I could show my potential on track whereas at Aprilia, I couldn't show any of that. To go to PBM and race for Ducati has let me show my talent again.

“I went to BSB without knowing what to expect, but I've really enjoyed this year. I've enjoyed the series - I like how it's run - I've enjoyed the fans and how involved they get. I've enjoyed the racing - apart from a few moments but, that's bike racing! I've had a really enjoyable year; I've found my passion and love for racing again which I lost in MotoGP, and I'm really happy to have it back. It's been a good year so far.”

In just 15 races in the domestic championship, Redding has established himself as the clear favourite for the title. With more wins and more podiums than his rivals, he knows that he’ll be in a strong position for The Showdown in the final three rounds of the year. With Assen, Donington Park and Brands Hatch playing host to the title deciders, he knows each of them and is fast at them too. The man who skipped an education on British tracks to instead learn his trade in Spain looks ready for domestic glory.

Mental vs physical

Twelve months ago Redding reflected on his roots. “I was the next big thing until I wasn't,” he said when looking back to winning his first Grand Prix aged 15. “When I think back to Donington 2008 and my career since, I would have expected more but that's also the mindset of a 15 year old who had only ever won. Talent only takes you so far in racing. I was taught to ride hard and train harder. I was taught to be a fighter and to be aggressive. I wasn't taught the mental lessons you need, and instead I had to learn them the hard way. I missed out on guidance and I didn't develop mentally at the same rate as someone like Marc, who I've raced against since the Spanish championship. Every day I'm learning lessons that I should have learned ten years ago.”

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Comments

He seems to be very concerned about what "people" think. That indicates insecurity, and, after the Aprilia experience, that is easy to understand. Some riders play to the grandstands...some great one, like Valentino or Barry Sheene...others have the Ted Williams approach (the Boston slugger and secret Mexican...a long story... who, after experiencing criticism early in his career, decided never to doff his cap even to the admiring home crowd). The level of the BSB series in high but short of WSBK, so it will be interesting to see Scott in the deep end with a factory Ducati and a fast team mate like Chaz. WSBK with Rea as the man to beat on the Kawa was very compelling TV this year until Bautista reverted to crashing. What SBK fans may not have known is that Alvaro over his MotoGP career was right up there with Marquez and Crutchlow in crashes. I expect Kawasaki to come up with something for next year because the Ducati is very fast and in 2020 Ducati will have previous-season data to fall back on. My real doubts are whether Honda will actually field a competetive bike. Bautista, since his 250 days, had not really competed for a title, but this experience will make him stronger as he realizes how he overplayed his hand after that amazing early-season winning streak. What we saw this year was a rider who has not been a contenderfor a title since 2008 in 250 suddenly leading a championship and letting overconfidence catch him out. Starting in Portimao it will be very interesting to see how Bautista plays it...if his injuries allow him to push. 2020 WSBK looks very promising, especially if the grid fills out again.

Great to look slightly beyond MotoGP for a change. I'm very pleased for Scott, I was one on those who thought he could do great things in MotoGP, twas not to be, its a very very competitive field. Maybe superbikes is to be his thing. Looking forward to next year and really hope he and JR are running close.

Great interview, a really interesting insight as to what goes on further down the field and proof maybe that if you are good enough, rock bottom is just somewhere to bounce back from.

Never been a real fan but very pleased for him. 

When he won the 125gp in '08 my wife was stunned by the size little boy who finished 3rd, happily for me, I told her "that that kid is really good - I've been following him all year"!

Scott has always worn his heart on his sleeve and if ever there was a case of needing to engage brain before opening mouth, Scott was a prime example. He is also a case of winning too much too soon.

I remember he seemed at one time, not too long ago, to be more concerned about where to put a new tattoo, ( I could give him a few suggestions!), than his performance on the bike.

Maybe losing his seat on a struggling MotoGP bike in favour of a less sophisticated but front running machine was the best thing to have happened.

Hope he does well in WSBK, but he will have a hard time against the established stars. Just ask Leon Haslam.

 

 

 

 

Scott was always a character who raced hard and lived life to its fullest. I also found him to be very immature until this BSB stint taught him what he was missing without the "handlers" MM993 has always had. That said, he's really young still and if he can beat Rea in WSBK season 1 on the Aruba bike, I would be climbing the walls if he doesnt get the offer to ride the full factory Duc GP21.

As for having a tough go in WSBK "Just ask Leon Haslam" the two are at opposite ends of their talent curve and Redding should only be asking Leon where the nearest loo is when he gets to Monza or Imola or some other track he hasnt been to.

 

 

 

I was thoroughly impressed by Scott’s immediate pace and success in BSB. His GP years were mostly good - so close to a world title - until Aprilia. Aprilia appear to be like the pre-Dall’Igna Ducati - “If you can’t ride it we’ll find someone who can”. That has been shown to be a good way to waste a lot of money and time.

Scott’s ride at Knockhill was particularly impressive. Wet, narrow, twisty, and with hardly anywhere to pass, he made overtakes in places that were surprising with a precision and pace that belied the track and conditions.

Yes, WSBK is not an easy gig but he will know the chassis and engine and is possibly a slightly less ‘polite’ rider than Chaz (who I like a lot) and he might just surprise the doubters again. I hope so.

Don't know if they can play but I would fancy the Ducati WSBK riders in a game of 2 v 2 basketball against any other team of riders. Both over 183cm (6ft) which makes them outliers in height terms. Maybe the size similarity will help with setup and the V4R has enough horsepower to cart them around.