Honda WSBK Press Release: Rea And Aoyama To Test In Australia

Press releases announcing that riders are going testing is the first sign of motorcycle racing's equivalent of spring. Today, Honda (no longer Castrol Honda, though Castrol remain as a "key secondary partner") announced that their World Superbike riders Johnny Rea and Hiroshi Aoyama are to go testing at Phillip Island this week, in the run up to the first WSBK round there at the end of February. The long wait is nearly over for race fans.

Below is the official press release from Honda:

Rea and Aoyama head for Phillip Island Superbike test

Honda's new World Superbike Championship pairing of Jonathan Rea and Hiroshi Aoyama kick off their preparations for the 2012 season with a three-day test at Phillip Island in Australia this week (17-19 January).

The team will be running the SBK race specification 2012 CBR1000RR Fireblade for the first time since the 20th anniversary version of Honda's iconic sports machine was launched last September.

The team will start its 2012 campaign boosted by news that, following a year as title sponsor, Castrol will remain as a key secondary partner until the end of the 2013 season.

The global lubricants manufacturer used Honda's World Superbike effort as part of a worldwide marketing campaign to re-launch its Power 1 brand in 2011. Its continued support of the team extends a commercial and technical partnership between Honda and Castrol which dates back to 1959, when the Japanese manufacturer first started world championship racing.

Robert Watherston, motorcycle racing manager at Honda Motor Europe, said:

"We're delighted that Castrol has decided to continue its long-standing association with Honda and, in particular, our World Superbike campaign. We are especially please to have signed a two-year agreement, which takes us to the end of the 2013 season."

Donald Smith, sponsorship manager in Castrol's Global Marketing Unit commented:

"We are pleased to confirm the continuation of our long-standing relationship and support of Honda and motorcycle racing. World Superbikes is the ideal proving ground for the development of our advanced range of Castrol Power 1 lubricants and we look forward to the future of our continued relationship with Honda."


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...... shame to see Castrol NOT been the title sponsor anymore.

It see pictures that the CRB is just white ( although thats nothing new for pre-season ) . Lets hope The Ten Kate boys can get some deal going. Nothing worse then seeing a plain bike.

I think Hiro is going to do well this year. There a few tracks he does not know, but he will have the backing of a very professional team & a fast team mate to help him get on his feet. Shame to 'loose' him to WSB, I would have been very happy to see him in #Moto2. Its a perfect class for his style & more importantly, his size.

Maybe the change of paddock, tyres etc will suit Hiro & he does well.

I really don't understand the whole "moving up" idea. Some riders are simply suited to smaller bikes. Aspar in years gone by, TE#24 today for example. Some do move up & make it work, some ....... dont.

As for JR#65, he really needs to make this year count. Title or at least top 3. Nothing else will be good enough. He also needs to do the Suzuka 8hr to stay in HRC's really good books. I still think the LCR would have been a better place for him in 2012 as at least everyone is starting a fresh this year. If he joins MotoGP in 2013 (fingers crossed) then he will already be one year behind the pack.

It will be interesting to see how both Rea & Smith compare in 2013 ( if Rea does switch ) seeing as there backgrounds could not be any more different.

Good luck to both Rea & Hiro & good luck to Rea if he does do the 8hr. I really think he NEEDS to do it & do well if 2012 is his last year in WSB.

Let's face it... the 2012 CBR1000rr is still going to have trouble getting up to speed in WSB this year. Rea has been the only contracted-rider able to ride the thing among the front-runners! Ten Kate needs to get the ghosts worked out of the bike for Rea (and Hiro) to be a real threat this season. The electronics are still works-in-progress. Can Cosworth get anything more from the engine under WSB specs? The bike is still down on power. Unless Rea gets pole and gets a 1-2-second gap while leading, he will have a lot of work to do to stay in front of people like Laverty, Biaggi, Checa, and all the BMWs on certain tracks! Sad but so true! Rea is a smart talented rider... he has a clause in his contract somewhere about going to MotoGP with Honda. What the conditions are in that contract? I would like to know. Rea wants to be WSB Champion with Ten Kate for Honda before moving up... but I think that's a very tall order!