The FIM today published the preliminary and provisional calendar for the WorldSBK championship for the 2021 season.
Like all aspects of international events, it is very much a provisional affair, subject to local and regional restrictions on movement and events in light of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
The biggest change to the season is the rescheduling of the Philip Island round of WorldSBK. Instead of being the opening race of the season, it is now due to take place in the second half of November, with a date still to confirmed.
Travel to Australia is still nigh on impossible, but the hope is that restrictions will look very different by the end of 2021, as vaccines start to be rolled out.
Moving Phillip Island to November means that the 2021 WorldSBK calendar is set to kick off in The Netherlands in Assen, with all three classes starting their seasons at the first round.
The WorldSBK paddock then moves around Europe for the summer, with a race every two to three weeks up until the British round at Donington Park, due to be held at the start of July.
Only the World Superbike class will be racing at Donington, with no information as to which other series will be racing there as support classes.
The WorldSBK season resumes two months later at Magny-Cours in France in early September, before heading south to Barcelona, then Jerez, and then Portimao.
The Portuguese round – the second race in the country, with Estoril scheduled for May – will be the final race in Europe, before the WorldSBK and WorldSSP classes head overseason.
First port of call is San Juan Villicum in Argentina, before heading west again to the new Mandalika circuit in Indonesia, once that track has been completed and homologated.
There have been few updates on the progress of the track, especially given how severely the tourism sector in Indonesia has been hit, but the Indonesia Tourism Development Corporation has promised the track will be ready by November. After Indonesia, the WorldSBK paddock heads to Australia and Phillip Island.
The thirteenth and final round of WorldSBK is as yet unconfirmed, but believed to be planned for the Middle East. Qatar is one option, though the track is also due to be resurfaced, which could mean WorldSBK makes its debut in Bahrein.
As stated before, this calendar is very much a provisional affair, and extremely likely to change.
It is not yet clear which races will be open to fans, and anyone wishing to book travel and accommodation should make sure they have free cancellation or insurance to cover the cost of cancellation or change. But the world may look very different in three months time, once vaccination starts.
The provisional 2021 WorldSBK calendar appears below:
|April 23 – 25||The Netherlands||TT Circuit Assen||X||X||X|
|May 7 – 9||Portugal||Circuito Estoril**||X||X||X|
|May 21 – 23||Spain||MotorLand Aragón||X||X||X|
|June 11 – 13||Italy||Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli”||X||X||X|
|July 2 – 4||United Kingdom||Donington Park||X|
|September 3 – 5||France||Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours||X||X||X|
|September 17 – 19||Spain||Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya||X||X||X|
|September 24 – 26||Spain||Circuito de Jerez – Ángel Nieto||X||X||X|
|October 1 – 3||Portugal||Autódromo Internacional do Algarve||X||X||X|
|October 15 – 17||Argentina||Circuito San Juan Villicum||X||X|
|November 12 – 14||Indonesia||Mandalika International Street Circuit***||X||X|
|STC||Australia||Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit**||X||X|
*All dates, events and the attendance of spectators are subject to the evolution of the global pandemic and the approval of the corresponding governments and authorities.
** (STC) Subject to contract / *** (STH) Subject to homologation /**** (TBA) Venue/event/date to be announced
2021 SUPPORTED TEST – Championship Filming and Photo-shoot season opening
- 29 – 30 March: Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya – WorldSSP & WorldSSP300
- 31 March – 1 April: Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya – WorldSBK