Unsuccessful this World Superbike season, Loris Baz went into exile in the United States to compete in the MotoAmerica championship. The Savoy pilot looks back on his experience across the Atlantic, as he prepares to return to World Superbike with BMW in 2022.
From the disappointment of not being able to continue in World Superbike (WSBK), to the discovery of the American championship, through the replacements he offered to Ducati at the end of the season in WSBK until his return to the championship of the world, the French rider experienced a real roller coaster ride in 2021.
Broken promises and defection of his former team Ten Kate Yamaha due to lack of budget, Loris Baz found himself without handlebars before the 2021 season of WSBK and had to take its bad patience before finding refuge in the United States in MotoAmerica.I was contacted at the beginning of February by Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati New York (the American team). I knew a few people at Ducati who confirmed to me that the material was good for this new team. It was a big challenge to go there, especially during the Covid year, ” describes the Savoy pilot deprived of his relatives for more than eight months. It was the most complicated thing because I am someone very close to my family. Besides running, I do a lot of things with my parents.
A Motorcycle Culture
On the spot, he discovered the American circuits, appreciated the curves, but above all demonstrated his potential on the track, in the fight with his new adversaries. It was a great experience both personally and professionally. I had the good fortune to meet some lovely people who will miss me dearly. Even if we didn’t reach our goals, we managed to have a good season, to fight 100%. I only have good memories of it. If the ambitions were above all to test and try to get good results, even podiums, the pilot also retains the reception that the American public gave him. I’m a rider who loves brawling and overtaking and they loved it. They live the event to the full when they move there. These are spectators who love the show, ”he notes.
European, among the Americans, Loris Baz tried to find a place over the races. There are some Americans who are really enthusiastic about the idea of European drivers joining their championship and there are others who are questioning and waiting to see. It is a country where there is a motorcycle culture. There is an interest in racing and at most Grands Prix I have seen more spectators than what you see in the Superbike World Championship. Laguna Seca was sold out, with more people than the Indy car.
An Attractive Championship?
In a little-known championship in France and in Europe, which experienced its golden age in the years 90-2000, where the drivers preferred to ride there rather than in the world championship, it was not until Wayne Rainey took over the reins for the American championship regained color and began to bring again promising drivers. In terms of show, organization, they have nothing to envy the world championship, after on the technical level, race management, there are things that are different and when you arrive from Europe it seems amateur sometimes. But they are making progress. If Loris Baz was unfortunately not able to celebrate the end of the season with his team, due to the replacement of Chaz Davies, injured, in the Superbike world championship, he will especially remember the people that I met there within the team like Bobby the team manager and as well as Louis jr and Louis senior, the owners of Ducati New York ”, he concludes.