Donington Park gears up for World Superbikes this weekend

Donington Park gears up for World Superbikes this weekend

08 July 2024

Donington Park gears up for World Superbikes this weekend

08 July 2024

Donington Park hosts the only UK round of the Motul FIM Superbike World Championship this weekend (12-14 July) with some of the world’s top motorcycle racers set to roar into the East Midlands.

A jam-packed schedule of races will treat British fans, with three red-hot World Superbike contests to look forward to. In addition, there’s further action from World Supersport and the Yamaha R3 Blu Cru World Cup, plus the first ever appearance on British soil for the FIM Women’s World Championship.

National racing from the stars of the future in the Tracker Kawasaki Superteen Championship and hardened battlers in the BMW Motorrad F 900 R Cup complete the on track line-up, with 16 races in total across the event.

Off track fun makes this the circuit’s biggest festival of two-wheeled motorsport. All spectators receive free access to the paddock, allowing them to rub shoulders with the stars and take a closer look at the pit garages and team preparation areas. The effervescent Paddock Show is open all weekend too. 

The best in the world putting on a show
This year’s World Superbike action has been nothing short of sensational, with fierce scraps for key positions all season and five different winners from the 12 races held so far.

After romping to consecutive title successes in 2022 and 2023, Ducati’s Spanish king Alvaro Bautista has a much tougher fight on his hands this time around. 2021 champion Toprak Razgatlioglu, one of the sport’s great all-round entertainers, has made the switch from Yamaha to BMW, and the move appears to have been a masterstroke. The Turkish ace leads the championship heading to Donington Park, having won six races already, and the circuit is one of his favourites.

Series newcomer Nicolò Bulega has knocked teammate Bautista even further off his perch. The Italian youngster won on his WorldSBK debut in Australia, and regular podiums since have kept him well and truly in the mix ever since.

Despite two wins, Bautista is only third in the championship following events in Australia, Spain, the Netherlands and Italy, and will therefore need to start his fight-back this weekend. He certainly knows how to win at Donington, with a double victory in 2023.

Big screens in all the key spectator areas will show the international race action throughout the event.

WorldSBK heads home, will the Brits prevail?
Donington Park hosted the first ever races for the World Superbike Championship back in 1988. The circuit has been a staple of the calendar since then, with only a handful of circuits hosting more race events than the famous track in North West Leicestershire.

Home success has been a key feature since then; Carl Fogarty’s first World Superbike win came at the circuit in 1992, a feat he repeated multiple times, with other legendary British figures to have won at Donington including Neil Hodgson, Jonathan Rea, and Tom Sykes, who went unbeaten at the circuit between 2013 and 2017!

The home heroes to cheer on this weekend are headed by East Midlands resident Alex Lowes, who won twice in Australia and is fourth in the standings for Kawasaki. His twin brother Sam meanwhile has made his full-time WorldSBK debut this year and is the next best-placed Brit, competing on a privateer Ducati.

Record-breaking six-time champion Rea is getting up to speed on his new Yamaha, and a first podium of the year is surely not too far away, while recent Bennetts British Superbike champions Scott Redding (BMW), another East Midlander Tarran Mackenzie (Honda) and Bradley Ray (Yamaha) will ensure the British fans have plenty of home stars to cheer on.

Off track fun adds to the festival feels
As well as the scintillating battles on track, there’s plenty of fun to be found around the venue, making this one of the most family-friendly events of the year.

The legendary Paddock Show, which opens on Friday morning, will operate all weekend, with the big stage right in the heart of the venue set to welcome star riders and key guests on all three days. All the major podium ceremonies take place here, with fans getting the unique opportunity to high five the winning riders after the international races, as they ride through “Victory Lane” on their winning machinery.

Chat shows with the leading riders, quiz games, charity auctions and concerts are all part of the festivities, as well as a big screen showing all the key on track action.

In addition to the Paddock Show, there’s more entertainment around the venue. Thousands of fans will make a full weekend of it on the sold-out campsites, with a music stage on the circuit’s infield hosting bands on Friday and Saturday evenings, while the Garage 39 restaurant, café and bar will be open late into the evening.

Meanwhile, Arrowdox will return to the event on each day, with visitors able to sling axes and tomahawks at wooden targets, and have a go at archery, all free of charge.

Tickets for the Motul FIM Superbike World Championship at Donington Park are still available at discounted advance rates until 4pm on Wednesday 10 July. Main raceday (Sunday) admission is priced at £45 for adults, with discounted rates for teenagers aged 13-15, and free entry for children under-13 all weekend. For more information and to book, click here