With one round remaining in 2021, the grid for WorldSBK 2022 is nearly set with 18 riders confirmed for next season and a host of new rookies joining the charge. Along with the big news of Aussie rider Oli Bayliss joining the WorldSSP lineup in 2022 too for Barni Ducati Racing!

Toprak Razgatlioglu will continue with Andrea Locatelli by his side at Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK team.

The old adage “stick to a good thing” remains true for the two contenders in the final battle for the 2021 WorldSBK Riders’ Championship, the Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK and Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK team.  Both have opted to keep their line-up the same for 2022, with Jonathan Rea teamed in the KRT box with Alex Lowes while Toprak Razgatlioglu will continue with Andrea Locatelli.

The biggest change comes at Team HRC who have had a big shake-up and will run an all-rookie line-up in 2022 with MotoGP™ star Iker Lecuona and Moto2™ veteran Xavi Vierge moving from the MotoGP™ to WorldSBK to join the factory Honda team. Consequently, Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam leave HRC with Haslam’s plans unconfirmed, but with Spaniard Bautista returning to Aruba.it Racing – Ducati where he launched his WorldSBK career in style back in 2019, putting Rea under considerable pressure with his dominance of  early season racing.

“Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam leave HRC with Haslam’s plans unconfirmed, but with Spaniard Bautista returning to Aruba.it Racing.”

Bautista moved to Team HRC for two seasons following his 2019 success, but will return to Ducati for 2022, hoping to emulate the form he showed when he first joined the Bologna manufacturer. His team-mate will be Michael Ruben Rinaldi with the young Italian remaining at the factory Ducati outfit for a second season. Bautista’s return to Ducati was facilitated by Scott Redding’s move to the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team. Redding, like Bautista, moved to WorldSBK from MotoGP™ and joined Ducati, but after two seasons has decided to head to BMW where he will race alongside Dutchman Michael van der Mark.

After two seasons in WorldSSP and becoming a regular podium contender, German Philipp Oettl will join Team GoEleven after agreeing to a two-year deal till the end of season 2023. Sammarinese rider Luca Bernardi will make the step up to WorldSBK with the Barni Racing Team after a single season in WorldSSP, which was also ended early due to injury. Like Oettl, Bernardi became a regular podium contender during his time in WorldSSP and has also agreed a two-year deal with his new team as he arrives in WorldSBK at just 20 years old.

Alongside Team GoEleven and Barni Racing Team, other independent outfits have also confirmed their riders for 2022.

 Garrett Gerloff and Kohta Nozane will remain with the GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team for next season with the Yamaha YZF R1 while the Bonovo action BMW Racing Team will expand to two riders for 2022: Loris Baz returns to WorldSBK after a season in the USA, and a brief cameo in WorldSBK this season, while Irishman Eugene Laverty is back full-time in WorldSBK after a difficult 2021 campaign.

Belgian rider Loris Cresson was announced on a two-year deal with OUTDO TPR Team Pedercini Racing from 2021. Lucas Mahias, who has missed the end of the 2021 campaign through injury, will also be back in 2022 at the Kawasaki Puccetti Racing squad.

The grid is shaping up nicely, lets hope for a championship battle as fierce as the Razgatlioglu vs Rea battle this year!

 

Despite confirmation of line-ups from five independent outfits, Motocorsa Racing, Orelac Racing VerdNatura, MIE Racing Honda Team and Gil Motor Sport Yamaha have all yet to announce their plans for next season, while Pedercini Kawasaki has expanded to a two-bike line-up for this season with only one rider, Loris Cresson, confirmed for 2022.


Confirmed 2022 rider line-up so far:

  • Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK: Toprak Razgatlioglu/Andrea Locatelli
  • Aruba.it Racing – Ducati: Alvaro Bautista/Michael Ruben Rinaldi
  • Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK: Jonathan Rea/Alex Lowes
  • BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team: Scott Redding/Michael van der Mark
  • Team HRC: Iker Lecuona/Xavi Vierge
  • GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team: Garrett Gerloff/Kohta Nozane
  • Team GoEleven: Philipp Oettl
  • Kawasaki Puccetti Racing: Lucas Mahias
  • Barni Racing Team: Luca Bernardi
  • Bonovo action BMW Racing Team: Eugene Laverty/Loris Baz
  • OUTDO TPR Team Pedercini Racing: Loris Cresson

 

Kawasaki

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