Team HRC is ready to race at historic Assen for the first time
As Team HRC heads into the fifth round of the 2021 Superbike World Championship at the historic TT Assen Circuit in The Netherlands, factory riders Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam are keen to do well in front of what is set to be a full capacity audience.
Held a little over a fortnight ago, the fourth Donington Park round brought solid results for local rider Haslam, who crossed the line fourth in the Tissot Superpole race, while Bautista scored a best of eighth in the weekend’s first Superbike race.
This is the first time factory Team HRC will visit Assen, as last year’s round was ultimately cancelled due to the global pandemic. The 2019 edition saw Bautista storm to victory in both the weekend’s races, which ran on Sunday after freezing conditions and hail forced Race Direction to postpone Saturday’s action until the next day. Haslam scored a best result of fifth in race 1. With this year’s round taking place in summer, the team hopes for better, or at least warmer weather this time around.
The TT Assen Circuit, also known as the ‘cathedral’ of motorcycle racing, has hosted Superbike events for many years, ever since 1992 in fact. The track is 4.542 km in length and comprises eighteen turns, twelve of which right-handers and six left.
Weekend schedule (CEST):
10.30 – 11.15 – SBK Free Practice 1
15.00 – 15.45 – SBK Free Practice 2
9.00 – 9.30 – SBK Free Practice 3
11.10 – 11.25 – Superpole
14.00 – SBK Race 1
9.00 – 9.15 – SBK Warm-up
11.00 – Superpole race
14.00 – SBK Race 2
Alvaro Bautista 19
“We’re ready to go again after a couple of weeks down time. I’ve spent some time at the beach with my wife and kids and I’ve also kept up with my training to be ready for this second part of the season of course. It’s going to be intense because we now have quite a few races coming very close together. So we need to be as prepared as possible. I really like the Assen track anyway and can’t wait to get back on my bike after the break. We collected a lot of data last time out at Donington and hopefully this means we can start with a stronger base this weekend and work hard to take some more steps forward.”
Private: L Haslam 91
“I’m looking forward to going to Assen, a circuit where I’ve had some great results and podiums on almost every bike I’ve ridden there in the past. An historic track, it’s a bit like Phillip Island in some ways, and it’s always been one of my favourites. I have some great memories of the place too, like the double podium back in 2009 with the Stiggy Honda team. So I think the Honda will go well there and I’m looking forward to getting back to work, confident we can build on our recent results at Donington."
“The Cathedral” of motorcycle racing as it is known colloquially, the TT Circuit Assen has been hosting WorldSBK races since 1992, and celebrated its 25thanniversary as a Superbike venue in 2016. TT Circuit Assen
|Pole Record||1'32.934 (175,944 Km/h) T.Razgatlioglu (Yamaha YZF R1, 2022)|
|Race Record||1'33.620 (174,65 Km/h) A. Bautista (Ducati V4, 2022 SPR)|
|All Time Record||1'32.934 (174,87 Km/h) T.Razgatlioglu (Yamaha YZF R1, 2022)|
|2022 Race 1 Winner||J. Rea (Kawasaki ZX-10RR)|
|2022 Superpole Race Winner||J. Rea (Kawasaki ZX-10RR)|
|2022 Race 2 Winner||A. Bautista (Ducati V4)|