Australia’s Phillip Island Grand Circuit kicks off the year’s World Superbike action this morning with back to back practices and qualifying across all classes today, and 15 races scheduled across Saturday and Sunday in the weekend’s Yamaha Finance round.
Backing the world superbikes will be world supersport and four Australian national classes including the return of 48 year old Troy Bayliss to Australian superbike competition.
In the premier production bike class, Northern Ireland’s Jonathan Rea will begin his title defence of the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship on the factory Kawasaki, at a circuit where he has won five of the last six races and was fastest in final pre-season testing earlier this week.
Rea’s strongest opposition will not only come from within thanks to teammate Tom Sykes, but also from Ducati pair Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri, Aprilia’s Eugene Laverty, Honda’s Leon Camier, Yamaha duo Michael van der Mar and Alex Lowes, MV Agusta’s Jordi Torres, the returning Loris Baz (BMW) and Xavi Fores (Ducati).
The WorldSBK field, which will battle it out over 22-lap races on Saturday and Sunday, also includes three domestic riders: former Aussie superbike champions Wayne Maxwell (Yamaha) and Troy Herfoss (Honda), as well as Daniel Falzon (Yamaha).
In the world supersport category, Queenslander Anthony West (Kawasaki) has his best chance yet of winning at Phillip Island after third place finishes over the last two years. He will be joined by teenage compatriots Lachlan Epis and Tom Toparis, also on Kawasakis, in Sunday’s 18-lap stoush.
There will also be 12 support races over the weekend, where the most intrigue will be in superbike with Aussie WorldSBK legend Troy Bayliss (Ducati) coming out of retirement at age 48 to take on the young tyros of the local scene.
Practice in all classes gets underway today. Gates open at 8am Friday, Saturday and Sunday with tickets at the gate or at Ticketek. A three day pass gets FREE Paddock Access and includes Party in the Paddock on Saturday evening.
Nothing Beats World Superbikes Live At The Island
World Superbikes is super affordable with a 3 Day General Admission ticket just $155 at the gate. In an absolute first for World Superbikes at the Island, all 3 Day ticket holders in 2018 gain FREE Paddock access.
Add camping at the circuit campground for up to four nights, and you’ve the perfect location for a summer long weekend away with your mates or family.
And as always with World Superbikes Kids 15 & under are FREE**
Nothing beats World Superbikes…Live At The Island.