James Edmeades (26) reckons the V-twin KTM RC8R will not be disgraced when it comes to racing it against the four-cylinder bikes in the all-new BSB Evo class in British Superbike races.
He spoke to MCN about the forthcoming season:
C’mon, how good will the RC8R really be?
Okay, it’s an unknown quantity but I think it’s going to be competitive. The RC8R is not the same bike we raced in the RC8 Cup.
The R model has 30bhp more and the chassis geometry is slightly different.
Tim Walker from Redline motorcycles, who is backing you this year, said you have help from the KTM team that runs in the German Superbike series. How important is that to you?
It’s good news. Their bike finished second in the IDM last year. They have experience and are willing to help us with technical information.
Their bike is not identical in spec but it’s close enough.
They run different electronics but similar superstock-spec engines and have tighter controls on suspension changes.
Where’s the big advantage coming with the KTM over the four-cylinder bikes?
You can get a twin off the corners better. We have a little less power so the bike is a little easier to ride.
I think the type of power it makes will suit the majority of the British tracks. I think we’ve got a good starting point.
This will be your third season with Redline. How did it all come about?
I’d been injured in 2006 after my career looked to be moving forward in 2005. So 2007 was a bit of non-event.
I did the KTM with Tim in 2008 and we just had a van and an awning to work out of. It allowed me to enjoy my racing again.
Last year we moved into the RC8 Cup and started well but had some clutch issues - a non KTM part as it happens – but it took us three rounds to sort it out.
We finished the year with the some good results. But when that ended KTM said they’d still like to have some involvement in racing with Tim so we looked at Superstock.
But you’ve ended up in Evo. How come?
We discussed things with KTM but then Stuart (Higgs - BSB Series Director) said he’d like to see us in the new Evo class.
Evo isn’t that much more expensive than Superstock – it’s what, wheels and chassis stuff?
The big plus for us is that we’ll get so much more out of being in the Evo class.
What’s the long-term goal?
We aim to build in this year and go into 2011 with a lot of experience under our belts.
If the whole BSB grid is Evo by then, our bike will be well-developed and we aim to expand the team to two riders.