Ducati will compete in this year’s British Superbike Championship with the new Panigale V4 R. It will a new era for Ducati, racing a four cyclinder bike for the first time, moving away from the twin cylinder bikes that have provided so much success for the brand in both British and World championships
Over the years Ducati has won the British Championship with many famous names such as Steve Hislop, Troy Bayliss, Neil Hodgson, John Reynolds, Shane Byrne and Gregorio Lavilla. During this time, British fans have seen the Ducati 916, 996, 998, 999, 1098 and Panigale R take more British Superbike championship victories than any other manufacturer.
Now a new bike, the stunning Panigale V4 R will debut this year with three teams PBM (Be Wiser Ducati) and Moto Rapido (Oxford Ducati) who last year competed with the twin cylinder Ducati Panigale last year and the new Brixx Ducati team.
After a number of years in the World Superbike and MotoGP Championships, the team returned to the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship full time in 2014.
In 2016 the most successful rider in the series’ history, Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne, added to his fourth title he won for the team in 2014 to take record breaking fifth title. The achievement was even more astonishing as the team had returned to Ducati and managed to not only develop a new bike but win the title with the Ducati Panigale. Byrne successfully defended his title in 2017, but unfortunately he was unable to go for a 6th title in 2018 after a serious accident meant he was unable to return to the team.
For 2019, the Be Wiser team will welcome two new riders to the team, Scott Redding who joins after a number of years riding in MotoGP and the Australian, Josh Brookes the 2015 British Superbike Champion.
Scott Redding (Be Wiser Ducati)
Scott first came to the wider public attention when he made history in June 2008 in front of a delighted Donington crowd as he became the youngest rider of all-time to win a Grand Prix race (aged 15 years and 170 days). The victory made him the first British rider to win a GP in any class since Jeremy McWilliams won the 250cc race at Assen in 2001.
In 2013 Scott enjoyed his best season in Moto2, triumphing in the Grand Prix of France, Italy and Great Britain and fighting to the end for the title with Spaniard Pol Espargarò.
His championship campaign that year was enough to secure him a ride in MotoGP for the following season, during which he finished as the top production Honda rider.
For 2015 Scott returned to Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS, where he rode a factory specification Honda RC213V in the premier MotoGP class.
In 2016 he moved to the Octo Pramac Racing squad, where he remained for the 2017 MotoGP season before moving on to Aprilia in 2018 for his final MotoGP season.
At the end of 2018 he announced he would be returning to the British racing scene in 2019 with Be Wiser Ducati team, racing the new Panigale V4 R in BSB.
Josh Brookes (Be Wiser Ducati)
Josh’s first international race was as a Wild Card at Phillip Island World SuperSport in 2004. Racing his Australian Championship bike he qualified on the front row and won the race. It was 4 years later in 2008 that he secured a full season ride in the World Championship & finished 3rd in the standings.
In 2009 he moved to British Superbikes, where he has been 3 times runner up and BSB Champion in 2015. During this period he has also made his Road Racing debut at the NorthWest 200 with a new lap record & at the Isle Of Man TT achieving fastest ever newcomer in TT history.
Moto Rapido Ducati was formed in 2002 by two Ducati enthusiasts who set up a small independent shop servicing, selling, tuning and racing Ducati. In 2005 Moto Rapido were appointed as a fully authorised Ducati dealer.
This independent dealership based in Winchester now enjoys a close relationship with Ducati UK and the racing division of Ducati, Ducati Corse. Moto Rapido racing has developed over the years from club level racing to the British Superbike Championship competing in British Superstock and the 848 Challenge to more recently racing in the British Superbike championship.
Last year was one of the team’s most successful seasons to date with rider Tommy Bridewell finishing the season with four podium finishes in the last three rounds and 7th in the championship. Tommy only joined the team half way through the season so hopes are high with the prospect of a full season with team and the new Panigale V4 R.
Tommy Bridewell (Oxford Ducati)
Tommy began riding in British Superbikes in 2010 after stints riding in the R6 Cup, the Italian Superbike Championship and European Superstock coupled with some wild card BSB rides.
In 2010 Tommy began his BSB adventure Quay Garage finishing a strong 11th overall. By 2012 Tommy had secured a showdown spot which put him in a championship contention before finally finished 6th overall. 2018 saw the switch to Ducati after starting the season with Halsall Racing, Tommy made a mid-season move to MotoRapido with some great results achieving the Riders Cup.
This season sees Tommy continue with Moto Rapido racing with new sponsor Oxford Products.
The newly formed team is owned by Guernsey based Barry Baxter and will contest the premier class with French rider, Sylvian Barrier. Barrier is a double winning former European Superstock champion and will be competing in his second season in BSB.
Sylvain Barrier (Brixx Ducati)
Sylvain won the FIM Superstock 1000 Cup twice, in 2012 and 2013 and then moved up to the World Superbike where he had mixed results. Last year he had his first season in BSB with Smiths racing finishing 21st after a season in MotoAmerica. For 2019 Sylvain is the sole rider for the new Brixx Ducati team racing the new Panigale V4.