World SBK introduces a price cap. Is cost-cutting the recipe of success?
The World SuperBike Championship introduces a price cap for the teams’ race bikes and parts. If there’s one thing that has been a prominent topic of discussion over the last 5-10 years in top level motorsports, it’s cost cutting.With teams trying their very best to stay ahead of the pack, the costs to go racing have just grown and grown, with money being spent left, right and centre to find that slight advantage over the competition.
This however has meant that the motorsports themselves have suffered overall. It has meant that the teams with the most money have locked out the front of the grid, and it became increasingly difficult for teams lower down the line to stump up the cash to continue to take part, which meant grid numbers began to dwindle. We have seen it Formula 1, in MotoGP and World Superbikes to name just a few.
In Formula 1 and MotoGP, measures have been taken to help keep costs down and entice new teams and struggling teams alike to compete. Now the World Superbike Championship is taking those same measures.
In more recent times, WSBK became much like MotoGP, and I don’t just mean in lap times which are unbelievably close! I mean, riders only had a chance of some sort of glory if they had the right seat in the right team, because it was the biggest teams that spent the most money.
Since Dorna have stepped in (owners of MotoGP), there have been talks about cost cutting in WSBK. While nothing has been fully confirmed, the organizers are looking to put caps on different areas of the sport such as bike prices, number of engines allowed (something that worked very well in MotoGP), a limit on suspension costs, number of rounds, and grid numbers. This will all add up to big savings for all the teams in the paddock, and over the next three seasons those caps will be lowered to further help keep the show alive.
This is great news for everyone in the sport. It means the smaller teams will be able to more easily compete with the guys at the front, and while it won’t affect them as much, the big teams will be making considerable cost savings too, ensuring some security for their place in the series.
Arguably the biggest winners though are the spectators. With the budgets, and in turn machinery more evenly matched, racing will be closer and we’ll see some of the great battles in WSBK that we were used to seeing in the days of old.
Teams save money and racing gets better. It’s win-win. You only have to look at series like the British Superbike Championship and Moto2 to know that this sort of thing does work.
The futures bright for one of the best motorsport series in the world!
Editorial Staff RTR Pictures from the web