WSB: Raffaele de Rosa rewarded with Superbike call-up
European Superstock 1000 champion Raffaele de Rosa will step up to the Superbike World Championship with his Althea BMW team this weekend in Qatar.
As a reward for winning his title, de Rosa will join Althea’s two regular Superbike riders, Markus Reiterberger and Jordi Torres in the squad for this weekend’s series finale at the Losail International Circuit.
Former 250cc Grand Prix podium finisher de Rosa clinched the 2016 Superstock 1000 title at the final round of the European series in Jerez as rival Tati Mercado broke down on the warm-up lap to bring a premature end to a year-long battle between the duo.
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The weekend won’t mark the Italian’s first appearance in the Superbike class. His WSB debut came at Phillip Island last year, but he would also go on to replace injured team-mate Markus Reiterberger at Laguna Seca earlier this year, where he scored a best result of 11th aboard the BMW S1000RR.
“Genesio Bevilacqua [Althea Boss] is giving me this chance in Qatar and I can say that, having won the title, this is a really great prize,” he said. I” have some idea of what to expect, seeing as I already rode the Superbike this year at Laguna. But in this case I know the track and, knowing that I have already won the championship, am feeling more relaxed. It’s a track I like and I can’t wait to get back to work. I’m really pleased to be able to take part in the final round at Losail.”