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Scott Redding Finds Early Success in WSB – Has Rea Met His Match?

To say that Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki) is on a roll would be a gross understatement. The winningest rider in WSB history has also won the last five championships. He even saw off a stiff challenge from ex-MotoGP rider Alvaro Bautista, who seemed unbeatable at the beginning of last year.

Enter Scott Redding. With four GP wins, including three in the 2013 Moto2 championship where he frequently traded paint with Pol Espargaro, the eventual champion, Redding entered the MotoGP championship series in 2014 with lofty expectations. Riding on three separate manufacturers’ bikes, he failed to win a single race in five years. Now, he is contesting the WSB title aboard a factory Ducati.

After just two rounds (courtesy of Covid-19), Redding sits atop the WSB championship with a healthy 24 point lead over Jonathan Rea in second. After a trio of third place finishes during the opening round at Phillip Island, Redding won both of the main events at Jerez last weekend, and finished second in the Superpole race.

With just nine rounds in the pandemic-shortened calendar, Redding looks to maintain his momentum and wrest the title from Rea this year. Consistency will be key, and Rea knows this better than anyone. Crashes and DNFs can take away a championship no matter how many wins you record. It will be fun watching these two battle this year.

18 Comments

  1. Bob Krzeszkiewicz says:

    I never thought Bautista was a bad rider in GP. He never adapted to the changeover to the 800s and just faded to the back. On the 990 Suzuki, he was really starting to show the front runners how good he was. Then, when things were getting better and better, the 990 was taken away. One more season on the 990 and I think he and Suzuki could have been a contender for the title.

    But I agree with the sentiments on last season, he threw it away. Got too excited or the pressure got to him.

    Looking forward to how WSBK unfolds.

  2. Knn54 says:

    Are you looking for a rival to JR? Right answer will be Razgatlioglu.. Despite experimental faults of Yamaha, he will be the next champ.

  3. Geoff Groom says:

    Two wins don’t make a champion, half a season doesn’t make a championship.

  4. Thad Stelly says:

    Kawasaki has continued to upgrade its formidable weapon. But the Ducati is like a GP production based bike in comparison.
    And no, Johnny Rey is certainly not messing with Scott Redding. Scott is going to bring it again and this time to JR.
    The Honda hasn’t been competitive in WSBK for years with not enough resources focused until this current season of direct HRC involvement for the first time in a while.

    • Dave says:

      That’s what everyone said last year, despite only Bautista’s particular copy of the bike producing the results it did. Bautista was *slaughtering* the field but Rea figured out how to win.

      Redding won a couple of races. This article is very premature..

  5. fred says:

    I don’t watch much of WSBK, but follow the headlines. In MotoGP, Redding came across as a foul-mouthed, low intellect, low culture kind of individual. That doesn’t necessarily mean he can’t ride a bike, but it does mean that I won’t be a fan. His results were unimpressive in MotoGP.

    JR has been at the top so long that the writers like promoting anyone who might challenge the Champion.

    • Howard Tennant says:

      Your opinion on Scott sound’s a little harsh to say the least,
      One thing’s for sure he’s got the measure of Jonathan Rea who I have the utmost respect for

      • fred says:

        Fair enough. I followed SR in Moto2 for a while, but quit being a fan after getting more info. One of the problems with sports/movies/etc is the availability of information outside of the production. If all I had ever seen of SR were the races, with no interviews, etc, it might have been possible to have continued to follow and support.
        I stand by my comments.

    • JVB says:

      Redding is just like any elite rider who doesn’t get a top ride or find a bike that suits them. Redding already looks comfortable whereas Chazz has had few good race weekends on the V4R. Rea was fast on the Honda, but once on the Kawi, it was game over. Most elite racers have a high level of self confidence, and few are humble/likeable. Although the top has been Rea, Rea, Rea … for the past few years, the 2-9 racing has been very close vs MotoGp. This year shows that Rea/Kaw has to work to stay on top; yea for the fans. With MM out of MotoGP, it’s an open series. Something in COVID finally is rewarding with 2 series full of close competition.

  6. Henry Cameron says:

    I thought Kawasaki would of upgraded the bike for Johnny,better by nect season.

  7. Provologna says:

    I do not closely follow WSBK. Several years ago, around the time that Nicky Haydn passed away (RIP), Honda was rumored to be finally releasing a competitive bike. What came of that? False alarm? Weak rider? Both?

    • Jeremy says:

      During Hayden’s time, Honda didn’t bring anything new to the table. Alvaro Bautista is campaigning this year on the next gen CBR.

    • Jason says:

      Honda has a new bike for 2020 that is being ridden by British Superbike Champion Leon Haslam and ex-MotoGP rider Alvaro Bautista. They are faster than the BMWs and slower than the rest.

  8. mickey says:

    Even a lousy MotoGP rider is fast lol. Can Ducati buy a WSBK championship? Is Rea just messing with Redding, like he did with Bautista?

    So many fun stories in this lol.

    • Motoman says:

      Yeah what happened to Bautista last year? I thought he had a lock on the title then it all went to shat. He did crash at the most inopportune times in MotoGP but it looked like he was going to be dominant.

      • JVB says:

        Bautista reverted to his old MotoGp ways. Crash, Crash, and out of a MotoGp ride. The beginning of the season was the anomaly.