16 December 2014
WSBK Rider of the Year vote: 9th – David Salom
David Salom breaks into your top ten for the first time after clinching the World Superbike EVO crown in 2014.
9th – David Salom
Average poll score out of ten: 6.0
Team: Kawasaki Racing Team
Bike: Kawasaki ZX-10R (EVO)
Fastest Laps: 0
Best Finish 8th
Championship points: 102
Championship position: 12th
Having flitted between the Superbike and Supersport classes since 2007 with mixed success, David Salom returned to the former in 2014 with a renewed mission to hone Kawasaki Racing's 'future' ZX-10R under the newly-created EVO ethos.
Strictly speaking, Salom's acquisition was billed as an opportunity for Kawasaki to get a head-start on its main rivals when – at the time - the ideals of the EVO regulations were supposed to be adopted across the board in 2015.
Though wrangles behind the scenes mean the EVO formula has been diluted so as to almost negate Salom's hard work in developing the bike, this was nonetheless the year that saw one of the paddock's mainstays blossom from a background figure to a forefront contender.
Granted, the backing of KRT was always likely to elevate Salom to the status of a potential title contender, not least because his ZX-10R was always destined to have the latest updates in an EVO field brimming with less accomplished ZX-10Rs.
Even so, it was the manner in which Salom achieved the EVO title that particularly stands out because at a level where the margin for error is slight and the maximum points he would likely be competing for were often no more than four or five, the fact he won the title by 30 points (despite missing an entire round) is testament to his sheer consistency and speed.
Indeed, of the 22 races he started, Salom missed the points on just two occasions. When you consider he finished no higher than eighth in any race (a product of the fact his bike was never likely to challenge most of the 'championship' class field), it is quite the achievement.
Beyond the statistics, Salom's race craft came on leaps and bounds in 2014, the Spaniard securing 13 class wins, many of which were achieved from starting positions lower than his direct rivals, while his methodical riding style often saw him overhaul competitors on the final laps.
A breakthrough that has rightly earned him 'official' status with the Pedercini Kawasaki team for 2015 - whom he raced for on a very privateer bike in 2009 and 2012 -, you only need to look at his previous results in these polls to see just how far he has come in your reckoning since those days…
Top 10 WSBK Rider of the Year 2013: N/A
Top 10 WSBK Rider of the Year 2012: 16th
Top 10 WSBK Rider of the Year 2011: N/A
Top 10 WSBK Rider of the Year 2010: N/A
Top 10 WSBK Rider of the Year 2009: 23rd
Do you agree the poll results? If not, why not? Leave your comments below...
About the vote:
Rather than repeat the Riders' World Championship standings, the WSBK Rider of the Year poll asks viewers to take into account factors such as machinery, performance relative to a team-mate, riding style, experience, injuries, progress and personality just as much as race results.
Over 40,000 votes were cast for the 2014 Crash.net WSBK Rider of the Year poll, where viewers awarded each of the top twenty from this year's WSBK standings with a mark out of ten.
Click on relevant pic to enlarge
the conversation - Add your comment
Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.