World Superbike Champion Guintoli targets return to the podium at ‘home of motorcycle racing in the UK’
Reigning World Superbike Champion Sylvain Guintoli is aiming for a return to the podium at Donington Park this weekend after a challenging start to his title defence.
Guintoli won last year’s World Superbike Championship in fine style with five victories and 11 further podium finishes including a third place at Donington, but has yet to finish in the top three this year after switching from Aprilia to Honda during the winter.
The Frenchman, who lives in Leicestershire and considers Donington a home round, is confident he will be able to turn his fortunes around this weekend though, and give the dominant British riders something to worry about. “I really enjoy racing at Donington Park and after a strong result at Imola last time out, where I went from 15th to fifth, hopefully we can build on that and challenge for podiums soon,” Guintoli commented.
“Donington is a unique venue, it is the home of motorcycle racing in the UK and a great track for bikes. It’s a brilliant circuit for spectators to watch the show and there are always great battles on track. For me it feels like a home race, I only live 20 minutes away from the track and therefore I have a lot of family and friends come to support me.”
Guintoli admits that the British riders will be the ones to beat this weekend, despite his own podium aspirations, with the competitive order changing dramatically over the winter. “Lots of riders swapped teams over the winter, and the new rules have played a big part in changing the order as well. Looking at the battles from the first rounds, the British riders are on fire so I think there will be big battles at the front and the podiums could be 100% British.”
Current championship leader Jonathan Rea may have won the majority of this year’s races, but Guintoli believes another rider could well lead the way this weekend. “Jonathan [Rea] has been dominating this year, but at Donington, Tom Sykes will be hard to beat. I can’t wait to start racing!”
Tickets for the eni FIM Superbike World Championship at Donington Park are available on the gate with free admission for children aged 13 and under. Hospitality packages are also available by calling 01332 819506 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.