2011 World Superbike Video
The biggest news this week in World Superbike is undoubtedly Castrol’s return to Honda. The two have a solid relationship since the 1959 Isle of Man TT, and the lubricant company is now back as title sponsor with Honda; the last time the two were united was 2002.
In its years as Castrol Honda in World Superbike, the team took three world titles: John Kocinski in 1997, and then twice with Colin Edwards in 2000 and 2002. Ten Kate became title sponsor in 2004, when Honda pulled all factory efforts from WSBK. That year, the sole rider of the Ten Kate Honda WSBK team Chris Vermeulen finished fourth overall in the championship.
For 2011, the newly-signed Ruben Xaus and Honda regular Jonathan Rea will contest on the CBR1000RR Fireblade. Rea, 23, of Northern Ireland, took two wins in 2009 WSBK, finishing fifth overall. In the 2010 World Superbike Championship, Rea took four wins, and finished fourth overall.
In this YouTube video, Rea discusses the tough competition in the 2011 World Superbike Championship and the development of Fireblade CBR1000RR. Rea also discusses his teammate Ruben Xaus.
Xaus, who has competed in the World Superbike championship since 1998, joined the Honda team after the 2010 WSBK season. Xaus left the BMW Motorrad team to join Honda.
The 32-year-old Spaniard finished runner-up in 2003 before competing in MotoGP for two years. Xaus returned to World Superbike in 2006 with Ducati, then joined BMW in 2009. To date, he has 11 career wins, and a total of 35 podium finishes.
The 2011 World Superbike Championship begins Feb. 27 at Phillip Island, Australia.