Parkalgar (Autodrómo Internacional do Algarve) and Dorna WSBK Organization are delighted to announce that the Portuguese racetrack will remain on the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship calendar until 2022.
Ahead of the 2019 official WorldSBK test at Portimao, CEO of Autodromo Internacional do Algarve Paulo Pinheiro, Isilda Gomes mayor of the city together with João Fernandes President of Algarve Tourism Board and Gregorio Lavilla (WorldSBK Executive Director of Sporting and Organization) have announced the signing of the contract extension that will see WorldSBK continuing to race in Portugal for a further three years (2020-21-22).
The Portuguese Round has been held in Portimao since 2008 with the only exception of 2016. Moreover, the famous racetrack has been the stage of the Official WorldSBK Test in 2015 and since 2017, becoming a particularly important venue for all riders and teams making their final arrangements for the most crucial part of the season.
Also participating at the event at Portimao Town Hall, Friday 23rd August 2019, reigning WorldSBK World Champion Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK), Alvaro Bautista (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) and Eugene Laverty (Team Goeleven) all gave positive comments regarding the extension.
Paulo Pinheiro, CEO of Autodromo Internacional do Algarve: “I am happy and proud that we will continue to have WorldSBK for another three years. It was our first event back in 2008, and it remains our main event and Portugal’s biggest motorcycle event. The championship has grown in the last years, and the next three will be even more exciting. WorldSBK for us, it’s almost like a family. Together we have raced in this paddock for seven years reaching amazing results. We have great memories, and for us, it’s amazing to be able to continue to be part of the championship. For our city, region and country, this is the biggest motorsports asset with global media exposure and more than 40.000 spectators attending over the weekend. During the year, with several tests and events, we reach more than 90 days of bike trackdays, and this shows how important WorldSBK is, as it confirms its economic impact.
We are looking forward to the next three years, but now we are fully focused on making the 2019 event bigger and better than ever before with the help of DORNA, teams, riders and all the fans.”
Isilda Gomes, Mayor of Portimao: “It is fantastic news that Portugal biggest motorsports event will continue to take place in Portimao for further three years, and it is particularly good to hear it in the year that Portimao has been named the European City of Sports. The news doesn’t only make us proud, but it is a commitment to continue to be active partners of Autodromo Internacional do Algarve and recognize the strong impact of this event on our local economy”.
João Fernandes, President of Algarve Tourism Board: “The Superbike World Championship is the biggest international motorcycling competition occurring in Portugal, and we all know that it attracts not only riders and their teams but also thousands of enthusiasts and media from all over the world. The announcement of the continuity of this event for three more years in the Algarve is, therefore, welcome news. The Algarve has long been regarded as a favourite seaside destination for German, UK, Dutch and Spanish tourists. It is now time for this region to claim the title of best sports destination thanks to its warm climate, good infrastructures and friendly hospitality. Sports tourism has been increasing over the last 20 years, and it is my wish that it can also bloom in the Algarve at motorsports speed (the Superbike World Championship will definitely help us with this task).”
Gregorio Lavilla, WorldSBK Executive Director of Sporting and Organization: “The renewal of the contract with Autodromo Internacional do Algarve is fantastic news for WorldSBK. Portimao Circuit stands out as being a very unique layout that makes it one of the riders’ favourite destinations in the championship calendar. Every year the Portuguese Round becomes the stage of spectacular racing and fans flock to Portugal not only to enjoy the WorldSBK battles but also for discovering the beauties of the landscapes and enjoying the amazing Algarve beaches. Autodromo do Algarve has modern facilities that constantly improve every year to host our paddock. The fact that Portimao has secured WorldSBK until 2022 shows the deep bond between the two parties, and we can’t wait to see the incredible races that Portimao will give us over the next three years”.