Q&A: Colin Wright.

Following the statement issued by the Airwaves Ducati team after it was informed that the Ducati 1098R is to given a ten kilo weight penalty by Bennetts British Superbike Championship officials, contacted team boss Colin Wright to get the latest on whether or not the team will run at Donington Park this weekend...
Colin, can you give us an update regarding Donington?

Colin Wright:
Nothing has changed at this minute.

As Darrell said, we are investigating the possibility of how and where to fit the weight. The problem is that nobody – Ducati or the factory team – has tested the bike with this sort of weight added and therefore we can't guarantee the safety of either the parts fitted or the weight fitted and we don't know about the stability of the bike, the brakes, or whether it is going to stress the engine more.

The bottom line is that, had we had known this was a possibility, we would have tested it and would have known what any possible problems would be. In other forms of motorsport they add weight but the teams know it is going to happen and they test it.
MCRCB said that the rules would be under periodic review during the year so do you know how it was decided that the 1098 had an advantage? Is there a system in place like in WSBK?

Colin Wright:
No there is no system.
So do you know how it was decided you had an advantage?

Colin Wright:
I can only assume it is following a conversation between the MCRCB and MSVR board. I've done the sums myself and having used the World Superbike system, we worked it out as 2.17 points difference.
So there would have been no need for a change with that system...

Colin Wright:
Like Darrell said in the press release, he questioned had Cal not fallen off at Oulton Park and been 44 points behind Shane, would they have made the same decision? I think the answer is probably not.
Six kilos is the current difference between twins and fours in WSBK, do you know where this ten kilo figure for BSB has come from?

Colin Wright:
Not at all. The one thing we do know, because Ducati have tested it, is what the bike would perform like and what the set-up would be at 171 or 172 kilos – whatever it is. We would be happy to do it. The real truth is that they want to convince the other manufacturers that by bringing their RPM down, they aren't going to lose out to the Ducati.
So you think that is the trade off they are trying to sell to them?

Colin Wright:
Yeah and they'd rather keep the rest of the paddock happy instead of us. They have to keep the majority happy at the end of the day I suppose.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
67. Shane Byrne Airwaves Ducati. Race 2.
Jakub Smrz (CZE), Lloyds British Moto Rapido Ducati, BSB Brands Hatch [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Jason O`Halloran, Honda Racing, BSB, Donington test [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Broc Parkes (AUS), Milwaukee Yamaha, BSB [Credit: Milwaukee Yamaha PR]
Broc Parkes (AUS), Milwaukee Yamaha, BSB [Credit: Milwaukee Yamaha PR]
James Ellison and James Westmoreland, JG Speedfit Kawasaki, BSB Donington Park, [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Josh Brookes (AUS), Milwaukee Yamaha, BSB [Credit:]
Josh Brookes (AUS), Milwaukee Yamaha, BSB [Credit:]
Stuart Easton, PBM Kawasaki, BSB [Credit:]
Dan Linfoot, Honda Racing, Donington Park, BSB  [Credit:]
Dan Linfoot, Honda Racing, Donington Park, BSB  [Credit:]
Dan Linfoot, Honda Racing, Donington Park, BSB  [Credit:]
BSB grid multiple riders, BSB Donington Park [Credit: British Superbikes]
James Ellison and Mark Smith-Halvorsen, JG Speedfit Kawasaki Credit: GBmoto
Shane Byrne (GBR) PBM Kawasaki, BSB [Credit:]
Danny Buchan, Be Wiser Kawasaki, BSB [Credit:]
Ryuichi Kiyonari, Buildbase BMW, BSB Donington [Credit:]
James Westmoreland (GBR), JG Speedfit Kawasaki, [Credit:]

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carole huntington

May 21, 2008 2:50 PM

Ok, am probably lining myself up for a fall here, but is it just the two Airwaves bikes being penalised, or the other two Ducs as well - NW200 of Micheal Rutter, and the Buildbase one? It does seem unfair to do this mid season, and less than a week before a race. Don't know the politics behind it, and don't really want to know! Am a racing fan, not a politics fan. As every one else has said, its not Shakeys fault he's way ahead, eveyone else keeps dropping off!! Consistency is the key - look at the results for the Hydrex of Ellison, now that is a surprise, but he's consistent! Will be a great shame if the Airwaves guys aren't there at the weekend!

Martin - Unregistered

May 21, 2008 1:32 PM

Safety issues aside, it seems very unfair to give any team 4 days notice of a change designed specifically to handicap them. If HM Plant then take over as the dominant team (which is most likely), will they get the 10Kg penalty in a months time? That will probably hand an advantage to Tom Sykes, will he alone get the 10Kg penalty as his team mate is still learning the tracks?! It'll become more like BTCC rules but without any written regulations determining when, why or how penalties will be administered.

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