Toprak on Yamaha’s 2023 rookies in WorldSBK, tips Aegerter for success, Gardner ‘to adapt’

Monday, 28 November 2022 06:44 GMT

Razgatlioglu was keen to shine a light on two of the star names to come into WorldSBK next year, as another stacked line-up promises a belting season

The 2022 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship season is in the history books but the 35th anniversary season is loading; next year’s grid is already packed and with each signing, the anticipation growing. At the GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team, two rookies will be aboard the Yamaha YZF-R1, with reigning double FIM Supersport World Champion Dominique Aegerter promoted up to WorldSBK, whilst 2021 Moto2™ World Champion Remy Gardner moves over from MotoGP™. 

Both of them have caught the attention of 2021 World Superbike Champion Toprak Razgatlioglu, with the Turkish suggesting that both could make instant impacts in the WorldSBK class in 2023. Aegerter has won a stunning 17 races in 2022 as well as his ten in a sensational rookie season in 2021. 35 podiums and 11 poles in two seasons, Aegerter is already one of WorldSSP’s best riders, whilst Gardner will debut in the WorldSBK class and indeed the paddock. The Australian had a difficult time in his only MotoGP™ campaign but will make the switch to WorldSBK and the podium-finishing GYTR GRT Yamaha team, who look to bag a first race win in WorldSBK.

Starting with Aegerter, Razgatlioglu expects him to shine and adapt quickly to the R1 Yamaha: “He’s a very good rider and strong in the race, especially in the last part. 600cc bikes are different to a Superbike but I think his style is like a Superbike style, but it’s not possible to say before I see. He’s strong because the 600cc Yamaha and the R1 Yamaha aren’t too dissimilar, and it will be easier to ride the R1 after you’ve ridden on the R6.

“I say this because Locatelli was also a World Champion in WorldSSP and after, he came to the R1 Yamaha and was riding very strong,” continued the 2022 runner-up, who was beaten to this year’s title by Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati). “You just need a bit more of a Superbike style to keep the rear tyre better in the race. Aegerter is an experienced rider, so we’ll see how he goes next year.”

Razgatlioglu then turned attention to Remy Gardner, someone who he doesn’t know as well as Aegerter but is someone who will need to make an adaptation from MotoGP™ to WorldSBK: “Remy is coming from MotoGP™ and that bike is a completely different bike and I hope he rides very well, because Yamaha on the corners is very strong. We’ll see during test.”

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