Shigemi Tanaka (left), Director of Kawasaki Motors Europe with KRT riders Loris Baz (center) and Tom Sykes (right).
Shortly before the machines, spares and team members head off to Australia for the first round of the 2013 championship, media, sponsors and VIP guests had the chance to see the latest race version of the official Ninja ZX-10R in its full glory.
The guests were also treated to a visual presentation of what it takes to turn a completely stock Ninja ZX-10R into a Superbike World Championship contender, with parts of the SBK machine also laid out one-by-one alongside a stock roadgoing bike and the full Superbike racing spec machine.
The event was held, appropriately enough, inside the Fostering Arts and Design complex, which like the Ninja ZX-10R is famous for being on the cutting edge of modern design.
Speakers included both riders; 2012 championship runner-up Tom Sykes and proven race winner Loris Baz. Team Manger Guim Roda, Kawasaki Europe Director Shigemi Tanaka, and Kawasaki Europe Racing Manager Steve Guttridge also addressed their guests before the new bike was proudly unveiled by Tanaka-san, Loris and Tom.
Guim Roda, Team Manager: “I want to say thanks to the mechanics and the Kawasaki staff, who from the beginning supported us strongly in this project. We have to consider that from the beginning this was a kind of team-building job, which now allows us to explain how we build the bike to take it to the level of competing in the Superbike World Championship. I also want to say thanks to everybody who has helped us, especially our suppliers, the Motocard family, all the team who have worked to let us be here today and who will help us to have more success in the future.”
Shigemi Tanaka, Director Kawasaki Motors Europe: “I am honoured to be here to represent Kawasaki Motors Europe and KHI Japan, which are responsible for the World Superbike racing project. Five years ago Kawasaki joined forces with a new and young team called Provec, who managed our World Supersport effort in Europe. They provided an excellent overall effort for Kawasaki. Just last year the Provec team were rewarded by being promoted to assist our factory engineers in Japan, to develop our official World Superbike racing effort. Technically, the team are at a very high level and all the staff work hand-in-hand with our technical partners around the world to provide a race-winning package – the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R. Kawasaki regards our investment in both the Provec team and the World Superbike Championship as money very well spent. So we are very happy to be here again, in beautiful Barcelona, to launch the official Kawasaki Racing Team and to look at our amazing 2013 Ninja ZX-10R race bike, delivered by Provec. We wish the team, its staff, its riders and everybody involved in the racing programme the very best of success over the 2013 season.”
Having already enjoyed some extremely positive testing experiences since the end of the 2012 SBK season the Kawasaki Racing Team heads to the first round in Australia full of confidence and expectation for a strong 2013.