Fores moves to Honda BSB

WSB podium man will ar­rive in BSB with a point to prove

MCN - - CONTENTS - By Oli Rushby BSB RE­PORTER

‘The tracks are dif­fer­ent, there are even some jumps’

World Su­per­bike star Xavi Forés will make the move to the Bennetts British Su­per­bike cham­pi­onship in 2019 af­ter sign­ing a deal to join An­drew Ir­win in the of­fi­cial Honda Rac­ing team. Forés was left with­out a WSB ride de­spite lead­ing nu­mer­ous races and se­cur­ing five podi­ums in 2018. Not will­ing to set­tle for sub­stan­dard ma­chin­ery on the world stage, the for­mer IDM Su­per­bike Cham­pion turned his at­ten­tion to se­cur­ing a com­pet­i­tive seat in BSB. “This year I fin­ished in the top six 15 times, I had five podi­ums, so I felt it was time to jump onto a fac­tory bike in World Su­per­bikes,” Forés told MCN in his first in­ter­view since an­nounc­ing the switch. “I want to fight for wins, but in WSB there are only two, maybe three bikes that can win. In Ar­gentina I was lead­ing the race, putting in 100% and I was three sec­onds ahead of Jonathan Rea at one point, but in two laps he had caught and passed me. It was frus­trat­ing be­cause the bikes are not equal.

“In BSB, ev­ery bike can win and next year there are so many riders with new bikes start­ing from zero, so maybe this will help us too as every­body will have some­thing to learn dur­ing the sea­son.” While Forés is con­fi­dent ahead of the switch, he is not un­der­es­ti­mat­ing the chal­lenge ahead. “Ev­ery­thing is com­pletely new for me but I look for­ward to this. I did the same in IDM in 2014; ev­ery­thing was new, the bikes, the rules, the cir­cuits and that year I was able to win the cham­pi­onship. For sure, it will be harder here but I am ready for it.

“I know Assen, Don­ing­ton, Sil­ver­stone and Brands Hatch. The other tracks will be new for me but I have spo­ken with Havier [Bel­tran – Honda team boss] and we will test at all the tracks, even if it is on a street bike. The tracks are dif­fer­ent, nar­row, up and down and there are even some jumps. I’ve seen a lot of videos!”

In re­cent years, for­eign WSB riders mov­ing to BSB have strug­gled to make the switch, but Forés is con­fi­dent that he can de­liver.

“I have heard some peo­ple com­pare me with Da­vide Gi­ugliano, but he is Da­vide Gi­ugliano and I am Xavi Forés. Da­vide was a strong rider in su­per­bike, but in his last years in the cham­pi­onship he had some is­sues and this was maybe one of the rea­sons it did not work for him in BSB. For me, I think I am rid­ing bet­ter than I ever have so the very best Xavi Forés is com­ing to BSB.”

Forés says he will test at ev­ery track to learn BSB

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