Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Ducati Racing)
- After the Estoril Round, he remains the only rider to have been on the podium in every race.
- For his last race with Ducati at Misano back in 2019, he scored two podium places including a win in the Tissot Superpole Race.
- He tested at the Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli” ahead of the season and was the fastest rider on both days of testing.
- He leads the Championship standings with a 17-point advantage over six-time WorldSBK Champion Jonathan Rea.
“Our target at Misano is just to keep this work, to keep this feeling with the bike. We had some tests there at the beginning of the year. I had really good feedback there, so we’ll try to have again that feeling and try to be competitive as we’ve been in the first three rounds.”
Championship P2 – 144 points
Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK)
- So far this season, Rea has only been off the podium once, following his crash at Assen in Race 2.
- In 2021, he claimed three third positions at the Italian venue, whilst he has a record of eight wins and 15 podium places at the track.
- He took his first ever WorldSBK victory in Misano back in 2009.
“Misano is a race I always look forward to because I love the circuit, I love the weather, I love the Italian fans. It makes it even more special that I had my first race win there in 2009. I expect a really tough weekend. It’s very hot… our competitors are very strong, so it’s important to do a really good job with my team on Friday, prepare the bike and fight for the best position. Of course, after the last few weekends, we feel positive with our bike. The biggest target this weekend is to fight for the podium and if we can achieve more that would be a huge bonus.”
Championship P3 – 109 points
Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK)
- In 2021, Razgatlioglu claimed three podium places including his first win of the 2021 season in Race 2.
- Misano Race 1 will be Razgatlioglu’s 130th race in WorldSBK.
- He is in third in the Championship standings, 52 points behind Bautista.
“I hope at Misano we’ll be fighting for the win. I remember last year my first win came at Misano so I hope I can also have my first one this year in Misano.”
Championship P4 – 84 points
Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK)
- In 2021, he claimed three ninth place finishes for his home round, his first in WorldSBK.
- He is in fourth place in the Championship standings, 25 points behind his teammate.
“In Misano last year, it was not my best weekend but for sure, we are at home, so it’s a little bit different. We’ll try to find out something more. Now we are more consistent and faster compared to last year so I’m sure we can also do great at Misano. I can’t wait to see the fans in Italy.”
Championship P5 – 76 points
Iker Lecuona (Team HRC)
- After three top six finishes at Estoril, Lecuona arrives in Misano for his first WorldSBK race there.
- He already knows the Italian track from his MotoGPTM career with a 14th place as his best result back in 2021.
- Lecuona is one of only two riders, along with compatriot Bautista, to score points in every race in 2022.
“Misano is a circuit that I know, so we will go with a little more advantage than at Estoril, but I don’t want to set my expectations. It is a circuit that I like, but we arrived as rookies with a new bike, and everything is new. Let’s see how the bike works, let’s see how I feel, and little by little we’ll make progress.”
Championship P6 – 60 points
Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Ducati Racing)
- In 2021, Rinaldi climbed on the podium on all three races including victories in Race 1 and in the Tissot Superpole Race; they were his first victories of the year.
- He tested at the Italian circuit back in March as part of Ducati’s preseason testing programme.
“We arrive at my home round. It’s always great to race at Misano, a race that I’ve won in the past. I like this track a lot. We come from not an easy moment, but I think Misano can be our turning point where we can start to be at the front again. So, this is our goal: be at the front and if we are able to fight for the win, I will give my 110%.”
To keep an eye on:
Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing) and Luca Bernardi (BARNI Spark Racing Team) will be looking to claim their best result of the season in front of their home crowd. Bassani’s best result this season were two sixth places at Aragon in Race 2 and at Assen in Race 2, whilst Bernardi’s best result is a 12th place at Aragon in Race 1, although the Sammarinese rider has been in the points in three of the last four races.
Following his fracture of the right femur neck sustained during the Estoril Round, Michael van der Mark (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) will be replaced by Illia Mykhalchyk. The Ukrainian rider already replaced van der Mark for the opening round of the 2022 season after the Dutchman suffered a different injury on the same leg. His best result was an eighth place in Race 1. It will be his first WorldSBK round at Misano, but he will benefit from his past experience in the WorldSSP and European Superstock Championships. Having been declared unfit for the remainder of the Estoril Round, Garrett Gerloff (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team), Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) and Philipp Oettl (Team Goeleven) will need to undergo medical checks ahead of the round.
1. Alvaro Bautista (ESP) Ducati (161 points)
2. Jonathan Rea (GBR) Kawasaki (144 points)
3. Toprak Razgatlioglu (TUR) Yamaha (109 points)