MotoGP’s mid-point on the three-week back-to-back tour around the Pacific Rim sees MotoGP in our backyard this weekend at Phillip Island for the Pramac Generac Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix.
Joining the stars of MotoGP will be two support classes for local competitors, however almost the entire regular ASBK Superbike grid are choosing to sit the event out.
There are no points on offer, the ASBK finale is the following weekend after MotoGP, and finding the extra ten grand (at least that for a major team – probably a quarter of that for a base privateer), to do the MotoGP round, after already trying to find enough budget for a seven-round ASBK Championship, just doesn’t add up for most.
Two of the regular ASBK front runners on the grid will be Penrite Honda’s Troy Herfoss and Mark Chiodo.
NextGen BMW have entered Glenn Allerton who will use the MotoGP round to shake down the new BMW S 1000 RR.
DesmoSport Ducati understandably seem to have elected to keep Mike Jones out of harms way ahead of the ASBK Superbike finale, but fronting up on their new V4R will be none other than Troy Bayliss.
Jed Metcher and Ryan Taylor are capable of maybe springing a surprise on some of the Superbike front runners.
The Supersport 300 ranks are also quite slim compared to a regular ASBK round.
All this of course means that ASBK is hardly putting its best foot forward as a shop-window into the series in front of what will likely be a very healthy MotoGP crowd. Not their fault really, it’s just economics….
Check out the entry list and full weekend schedule for the Australian Grand Prix weekend below.