The American rider enjoyed one of his strongest rounds of 2022, whilst he discusses 2023 options
The 2022 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship is alive and kicking after a lengthy summer break, with the Pirelli French Round at the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours delivering a titanic round of title plot-twists and fallout amongst the Championship contenders. However, besides the headlining stories at the very front of the field, there was also reason to celebrate for Garrett Gerloff (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team). The American took his first top five on the grid of the season in Tissot Superpole, before repeating the effort in Race 1 for his best result of the season.
Gerloff usually goes well at Magny-Cours and 2022 was no different, as he came back fresh from the summer break. The American ace put in a time good enough for the middle of the second row in Superpole, his best qualifying position of the year. After that, a good start saw him up to fourth in the early stages of Race 1 before dropping to seventh. Crashes for Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) and Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK), combined with Gerloff picking his way back through the field, saw the 27-year-old up as high as fourth, using the new softer compound Pirelli front tyre, before Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) got ahead of him.
Despite it being his best result of the year, it wasn’t an easy thing for Gerloff to say: “It was good in the end and it was nice to be top five for Superpole and nice to be in the top five for the race. It’s my best of the year and I kind of hate saying that because I was hoping that I’d at least be on the podium by now, but it’s going the right way. The bike felt good all weekend; as soon as we got here, it seemed to be working pretty well and everything is made simple.”
Talking further in-depth in his Saturday afternoon media debrief, Gerloff stated that a change at Most seemed to help: “We made quite a big change to the bike at Most, and since then everything’s been just a lot more simple. I wish we had that change at the beginning of the season. You don’t always have what you think you have. The bike’s working well, so I’m happy about this. It’s been simple. When things are simple, it’s always better. I know we can get closer to the podium.”
2023 is a big topic for Garrett Gerloff, with the American without anything confirmed and concrete for the following season. Whilst GRT are yet to formally announce their line-up, it looks like Remy Gardner may well be on his way over from MotoGP™, with a deal being “close” to being brokered. In terms of Gerloff’s options, there’s still the second seat in his current team that is a big question mark, but rumours around the paddock are pointing to a switch, perhaps to the Bonovo Action BMW team, although team principal Michael Galinski, was coy when questioned during an interview on Friday afternoon.
When asked on Friday evening in his media debrief, Gerloff said: “Definitely, kind of have an idea of what’s going on, but I’m tell you all! It’s still getting finalised.” When pushed further about whether or not he was waiting for BMW to announce it, he joked: “Hey, I don’t know what you’re talking about! It could begin with a ‘Y’, a ‘K’, ‘B’ or ‘D’, there’s a bunch of different brands it could be.”
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