Scott Redding was one rider under special observation ahead of race 1, and the Englishman certainly lived up to expectations. His third place is undoubtedly a good start to his WSBK career, especially for a rider who is actually making his debut in this category.
"It was the first race I did with these guys and it's normal that I still have to a lot of things to learn - Scott analysed - but despite this I wasn’t far away from the win so I can't be too dissatisfied. I tried to manage the race to go for the win: when I passed Lowes at the end, I thought I could overtake the Yamaha on the finish line, but then Lowes passed me again and I lost a bit of time. In any case, I’m happy with a podium after my front row start."
Scott recounts the moments before the start, and as always tells it in his own inimitable style.
“I was nervous before the race, but in the right way. The first thing I thought was "Don't mess up the start", luckily I made the first good start of the weekend and I thought "At least they won't kick my ass for this back in the pits": during the race I tried to understand my opponents and everything else, starting with the tyres ”.
Alongside the Englishman on the grid there was his girlfriend Jacey, who together with the team has helped Scott to integrate better into his new situation.
"My girlfriend is a bit like a tiger, you never know how she can behave (laughs). In any case, I have felt a lot of support from everyone in these days and I like it, the season is long, and the best thing is to be a united group".
Going back to the race, the first surprise for Redding and for everyone was the absence of Rea in the final standings.
"The fact that Rea wasn’t in front was a surprise, it’s always bad when your rival falls but luckily he is fine after the crash: I don't think he could have got away easily today, however, and in general in the championship, because there are a lot of fast riders and bikes out there. Apart from that, I tried to manage the tyres lap after lap, staying in the leading group. The idea was to stay in the top positions and go for it at the end, but Toprak was the best today. "
Something that many observers noted was Scott's difficulty in passing his opponents on the straight despite the power of the Panigale V4, but Redding has a clear explanation for this.
“A lot of people forget that Alvaro weighs 30 kilos less than me, which is why he is so fast with the Honda as well. Looking at the data you can see how I lose two tenths to him on the straight, so I don't have the advantage that he had: I am on par with the others in this respect, which is positive seeing as they are usually in difficulty ”.
Finally, the Englishman analyses the differences between Superbike and MotoGP, and congratulates his opponents for the great show.
“Compared to MotoGP, the lines are different because you don’t have as much horsepower, you have to ride more like you are on a 600 bike. The guys are absolutely not afraid of anything, you have to show that you have character during the race, and I think I did it: I like this type of races, they are great for both riders and fans. "