Loris Baz says Ten Kate Racing’s sheer knowledge in the WorldSBK Championship has allowed it to follow a different path in terms of development with its Yamaha R1 package.

The Frenchman made a belated debut with the Dutch-based outfit a third of the way through the 2019 WorldSBK Championship after Ten Kate Racing saw its long-term collaboration with Honda brought to an end in 2018.

Re-emerging as a customer Yamaha effort, both Ten Kate and Baz got up to speed quickly and by the end of the season was comfortably out-performing the satellite GRT team, as well as challenging the works Pata outfit for podiums.

He carried that form through to the opening round of the season in Australia with numerous stints in the race lead, even if the eventual brace of results – two sevenths and an eighth – arguably didn’t reflect his otherwise impressive pace.

Indeed, Baz says that while Ten Kate Racing receives factory-spec machinery from Yamaha, it is going its own way with development – such as the electronics – in the hope it will give them an edge.

“We are not the same team, we are doing our own job, our own development,” he said. “Some parts of the bike are different. We are part of the Yamaha project a lot but also Ten Kate can develop a lot of things because they have a lot of knowledge.

“It’s kind of being in a factory private team. I want to continue for a long time because my passion for racing is growing every year. I have never enjoyed riding and racing bikes as much as I do now.”

After three years in MotoGP, Baz returned to WorldSBK in 2018 riding the uncompetitive privateer Althea BMW but feels he has found a good home with Ten Kate Racing now.

“I really enjoy my life, to be living my dream. I want to continue for a long time because my passion for racing is growing every year. I never enjoyed riding and racing bikes as much as I do now. I feel like I’m 15 again since I’m back with Ten Kate and even if I had tough moments last year, I’m fully fit and I enjoy it so much.”

Ten Kate Racing had intended to double up to two Yamahas in 2020 with Sandro Cortese, but the deal fell through after being unable to secure sponsorship funding.

 

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