There have been rumblings around paddocks across the globe as to whether or not World Superbike would begin dabbling in a lower displacement class, and this week those rumors were cast in stone. FIM and Dorna WSBK have officially announced the introduction of a Supersport 300 World Championship, set to kick off in the coming 2017 season.
Viewed as a beginner-class for professional motorcycle racing, the newly minted Supersport 300 World Championship will act as a means to feed riders into the big-league classes of Supersport 600, and of course, Superbike. The 300 World Championship will make use of production-based motorcycles, including: Honda CBR500R, Kawasaki Ninja 300 (EX300ADF), Yamaha YZF-R3, and the KTM RC390.
Not included in the tentative lineup is the CBR250RR, which appears to be shown in the image above. Could the rumors surrounding a CBR300RR be true?
But back to the Supersport 300 World Championship; FIM President Vito Ippolito says “The intention of WorldSSP 300 is to create a benchmark for National Championships to follow. We want to offer an environment that is regulated and relatively equal in which future talent can grow, and where manufacturers can accompany young riders as they take their first steps towards stardom. ”
This is great news for racing fans; as we’ll see greater opportunities for riders to move abroad, and with a minimum rider age of 15, this is geared towards discovering the next crop of riders that will be filling the Superbike grid.
One of the main concerns regarding racing is the astronomical amount of money required to fund a team, and Javier Alonso, WorldSBK Executive Director, seems to be keenly aware of that: “The focus is to have an affordable Series for these young competitors,” Said Alonso, “Tre has been great interest for low-capacity motorcycles in this sport and the new WorldSSP 300 class strives to offer that. It will be promoted by Manufacturers as an easily accessible championship, the best possible platform to grow future stars where Manufacturers can accompany riders from an early age and as they progress through their career.
With lower investment, the potential for a young rider to get experience, and exposure seems more palpable. For a full description of the provisional Technical Regulations for WorldSSP 300, click here.