There's an old saying in the world of computers and the internet: "Information just wants to be free." We had one demonstration of that aphorism just before Christmas, when Nicky Hayden posted that now famous picture of Ducati's GP10 on his website, without clearing it by the factory's (usually very helpful) PR bosses. This week, an alert reader of the Italian websites BikeRacing.it and Motoblog.it pointed out that the World Superbike website's timing had a small hole in it, which meant that the provisional entry lists for the 2010 season are visible on the site before they have been officially announced by the World Superbike website. The breach is trivial, after all this same information is available to anyone with a list of press releases and plenty of time on their hands, but the leak panders very nicely to those of us who suffer with Larry Wall's Three Virtues Of Programming, Laziness, Impatience and Hubris.
The leaked entry lists reveal nothing new, other than that both World Superbike and World Supersport fields have thinned considerably from last year. Prior to the 2009 season, World Superbikes had 32 entries, though several of those teams and riders had fallen by the wayside by the time the series reached its climax at Portimao, as the global economic crisis took its toll. In 2010, the series has 23 entries, but perhaps the most surprising thing about the entry list is the fact that 14 of those 23 entries are factory-backed (though Ten Kate continues to deny it is a factory effort, perhaps justifiably). Another two or three riders could be added to that list, and and one or two could still disappear during the course of the season, so the final number is not yet fixed.
As in previous years, Ducati will be fielding the most bikes, putting some 5 machines on the grid, but the big surprise is BMW, which is expanding its entry to 4 bikes, now providing machines to the Reitwagen Racing team of Andrew Pitt and Roland Resch. This makes the Bavarian Motor Works the joint second largest contingent, alongside the Hondas of Ten Kate, Corse Italia and Echo CRS. Aprilia and Kawasaki will have 3 bikes each on the grid, though the Borciani-Guandalini bike of Jakub Smrz is far from certain to take part, while Suzuki and Yamaha will be running just the 2 official entries.
While the World Superbike grid has held up reasonably well under the current economic difficulties, World Supersport has been hit by the double blow of a poor economy and the debut of the Moto2 class to replace the 250s. Though a gentlemen's agreement existed - and was largely observed - between MotoGP and WSBK that Moto2 would not actively pursue teams and riders formerly entered into the World Supersport series, sponsors, riders and team personnel who might otherwise have looked at World Supersport have either defected or at least shifted their attentions to the Moto2 class. Riders in national superbike series are now looking at Moto2 as the next progression, rather than WSS. These factors have cut the field back to just 18 entries for 2010.
As you might expect, Honda dominates the World Supersport grid, with 11 of the 18 entries electing to race Honda's CBR600RR. But where World Superbike has an embarrassment of factory riches, official manufacturer support is much thinner on the ground in World Supersport, with just Honda, Kawasaki and Triumph fielding (semi-)factory efforts. Suzuki pulled out in the middle of last year, leaving Barry Veneman without a ride, but the biggest surprise has been the withdrawal of the World Championship winning Yamaha effort, directly after taking their first title in many years with Cal Crutchlow.
One novelty in the World Supersport field will be Paola Cazzola, the first woman to race full time in the class. There seems to be a resurgence of women racers, with Melissa Paris and Marie-Jose Boucher entering as wildcards at last year's US round of World Supersport at Miller Motorsports Park. Cazzola has come up through the European Women's Championship, which she dominated after Dutchwoman Iris Ten Katen retired.
2010 World Superbike provisional entry list
|2||Leon Camier||Aprilia Racing||Aprilia RSV4 Factory|
|3||Max Biaggi||Aprilia Racing||Aprilia RSV4 Factory|
|7||Carlos Checa||Althea Racing||Ducati 1098R|
|11||Troy Corser||BMW Motorrad Motorsport||BMW S1000RR|
|15||Matteo Baiocco||DFX Corse||Ducati 1098R|
|23||Broc Parkes||Echo CRS Grand Prix||Honda CBR 1000RR|
|31||Vittorio Iannuzzo||Squadra Corse Italia||Honda CBR 1000RR|
|35||Cal Crutchlow||Yamaha Sterilgarda Team||Yamaha YZF R1|
|41||Noriyuki Haga||Ducati Xerox Team||Ducati 1098R|
|50||Sylvain Guintoli||Team Suzuki Alstare||Suzuki GSX-R 1000|
|52||James Toseland||Yamaha Sterilgarda Team||Yamaha YZF R1|
|65||Jonathan Rea||HANNspree Ten Kate Honda||Honda CBR 1000RR|
|66||Tom Sykes||Kawasaki Racing Team||Kawasaki ZX 10R|
|67||Shane Byrne||Althea Racing||Ducati 1098R|
|76||Max Neukirchner||HANNspree Ten Kate Honda||Honda CBR 1000RR|
|77||Chris Vermeulen||Kawasaki Racing Team||Kawasaki ZX 10R|
|84||Michel Fabrizio||Ducati Xerox Team||Ducati 1098R|
|88||Andrew Pitt||Reitwagen Racing||BMW S1000RR|
|91||Leon Haslam||Team Suzuki Alstare||Suzuki GSX-R 1000|
|95||Roger Lee Hayden||Team Pedercini||Kawasaki ZX 10R|
|96||Jakub Smrz||Borciani Guandalini Racing||Aprilia RSV4 Factory|
|111||Ruben Xaus||BMW Motorrad Motorsport||BMW S1000RR|
|123||Roland Resch||Reitwagen Racing||BMW S1000RR|
2010 World Supersport provisional entry list
|5||Alexander Lundh||Cresto Guide Racing Team||Honda CBR 600RR|
|8||Bastien Chesaux||YZF Yamaha||Yamaha YZF R6|
|9||Danilo Dell'Omo||Kuja Racing||Honda CBR 600RR|
|22||Robert Muresan||Benjan Racing||Honda CBR 600RR|
|23||Chaz Davies||ParkinGO Triumph BE1 Racing||Triumph Daytona 675|
|24||Garry McCoy||ParkinGO Triumph BE1 Racing||Triumph Daytona 675|
|25||David Salom||ParkinGO BE1 Triumph||Triumph Daytona 675|
|26||Joan Lascorz||Kawasaki Motocard.com||Kawasaki ZX-6R|
|33||Paola Cazzola||Kuja Racing||Honda CBR 600RR|
|37||Katsuaki Fujiwara||Kawasaki Motocard.com||Kawasaki ZX-6R|
|44||Gino Rea||Intermoto Czech||Honda CBR 600RR|
|50||Eugene Laverty||Parkalgar Honda||Honda CBR 600RR|
|51||Michele Pirro||HANNspree Ten Kate Honda||Honda CBR 600RR|
|54||Kenan Sofuoglu||HANNspree Ten Kate Honda||Honda CBR 600RR|
|55||Massimo Roccoli||Intermoto Czech||Honda CBR 600RR|
|99||Fabien Foret||Lorenzini by Leoni||Kawasaki ZX-6R|
|117||Miguel Praia||Parkalgar Honda||Honda CBR 600RR|
|127||Robbin Harms||Benjan Racing||Honda CBR 600RR|