THE 2017 Superbike World Championships at Phillip Island are shaping up nicely, with massive entry lists confirmed for the national classes supporting the world categories on February 24-26.
There are 147 riders lining up for the four national classes, Australian superbike, Australian supersport, supersport 300 and historics.
Adding to the pressure, riders in superbike, supersport and supersport 300 will be facing the first round of their seven round national championship, so a shocker in qualifying to miss the start grid would spell disaster for a season launch.
It’s all adding up to a spectacular three days of on-track bike action with 16 races throughout the weekend.
Three world championship events in world superbike and world supersport will be held, along with three races apiece for domestic superbike, supersport and supersport 300, and four outings for the historic bikes of yesteryear.
The Australian Superbike Championships have enjoyed a renaissance in the last couple of years, and the popularity of the class is reflected in 43 riders enlisted.
Aussie supersport has attracted 35 entries and will be held over 10 laps.
Qualifying alone will throw up a challenge for the 300 supersport competitors, with 48 riders entered.
The burgeoning class is proving to be a magnet for experienced riders and emerging talent alike, with a number of the rookies coming straight from dirt track competition, a discipline that has helped mould a number of Aussie road racing icons like Casey Stoner.
WorldSBK icon Troy Bayliss’ son Ollie will be one of the riders in the three eight-lap races.
The majority of the 21 riders in historics will be backing up from the recent Island Classic meeting and the two 22-lap WorldSBK races will be held at 3pm on Saturday and Sunday, with WorldSSP (18 laps) starting at 1.30pm on Sunday.
For tickets visit www.ticketek.com.au and for more information ring the Superbike Hotline on 1300 728 007 or visit www.worldsbk.com.au
Superbikes back at the Island