Team HRC officially launches its 2024 Superbike World Championship campaign by unveiling the livery of the new CBR1000RR-R and outlining the squad’s objectives for the new season during an online presentation.
On Friday 9 February, Team HRC officially presented its 2024 WorldSBK project that will see factory riders Iker Lecuona and Xavi Vierge take to the track with the all-new CBR1000RR-R.
During the online launch broadcast on HRC official social pages, new Team HRC manager José Manuel Escamez outlined the objectives for the upcoming racing season. This was followed by a video unveiling of the new 2024 Fireblade that will be entrusted to Lecuona and Vierge. As they head into a third consecutive season with Team HRC, the two Spanish riders reiterated their goals for the upcoming championship, emphasising the need to exploit the new bike’s potential and obtain good grip and acceleration as well as consistency at different racetracks so as to build on last season’s performance.
The 2024 Honda Fireblade features an array of updated components, starting with new aerodynamics and electronics packages. The Japanese engineers have worked tirelessly in recent months to provide the factory Superbike team with a series of new parts that should bring benefits across many areas, not least acceleration, deceleration, and braking. During winter testing, the team and riders have had a first opportunity to work on the bike, as they seek a base setup that can allow them to harness the machine’s obvious potential.
The aesthetically impactful livery sees the CBR logo flaunt a brighter shade of blue, while a striking blue band adorns the belly pan. To reflect this change, the riders’ leathers incorporate a similar blue band running vertically from top to bottom.
Lecuona and Vierge will be back on track with the new-look CBR1000RR-R on 19-20 February, when they will take part in the very last pre-season test at the Phillip Island circuit in Australia before returning to the same track on 23-25 February for the opening round of the 2024 Superbike World Championship season.
Xavi Vierge (Rider #97)
Looking at your Instagram, it seems that you’re always either cycling or motocross riding.
“I like the winter period, as I can spend more time at home and make plans ahead of the new season. I love MX and can ride more over winter than at any other time. I try to do a lot of motorcycle training and cycling too…”
This is your third year in WorldSBK but also your third season with HRC. Talk us through how you’re feeling as you head into your third year.
“I’m really looking forward to this year… Continue
Iker Lecuona (Rider #7)
Tell us about your off-season?
“I’ve really enjoyed the off-season. I love the winter and love the cold, and am lucky enough to live in Andorra, which is the perfect place for skiing. So I do a lot of alpine skiing but then also some motocross and flat track…”
2024 is your third year with Team HRC in WorldSBK and brings a new Fireblade model. What is your focus during the pre-season heading into round one?
“I’m very happy to be a factory rider with the same team for a third year and it means I’m motivated to work hard during the pre-season… Continue
José Manuel Escamez (Team Manager)
Tell us about the journey that has led you to become Team Manager of Team HRC in WorldSBK?
“I first worked as a mechanic in Barcelona before moving into the racing arena. Most of my racing career to date has been in the MotoGP championship, where I’ve had chance to work with some great riders and good teams, including several seasons with HRC already. Now, I’m very happy to be the Team Manager of Team HRC in World Superbike and am ready to apply all my experience to this new role. The company is the same, and the way of working is also similar, so it’s been a relatively smooth transition, although there are also many new things to familiarise myself with, of course.”
What are your expectations for the 2024 season, in terms of the riders, the team, and the new Fireblade?
“It’s too early to talk about specific results as we still have tests to conduct. A realistic goal for us… Continue