Garrett Gerloff is going all out for a return to the podium ahead of the final round of the 2023 WorldSBK Championship having consolidated his recent run of strong form with BMW to finish just shy of the podium in Portimao.
Despite riding the satellite Bonovo Action Racing-prepared BMW M 1000 RR, Gerloff has emerged as the German firm’s strongest entry in recent rounds, with highlights including a surprise pole position at Magny-Cours and four top five results since the summer break.
Though he remains just shy of what would be BMW’s first podium of the season so far, Gerloff was particularly frustrated to miss out on the rostrum at the most recent Portimao round after collecting two fourth place results despite only qualifying 12th in Superpole.
I was so close to tasting the Prosecco DOC! It kills me! I feel really good with how the weekend went. Honestly, after Superpole and finishing on the fourth row, it’s not that I lost all hope, but I knew it wasn’t going to be easy.
“Now, the midfield is so strong that if you don’t have a good Superpole and you get caught up in those battles, it’s so hard to move forward. You sort of get sucked in like quicksand. I wasn’t as confident as I’d like to admit.
“I just wasn’t able to put it together in Superpole which is an issue of mine and something I’d really like to continue to work on in testing. To have two P4s feels epic. I wish I could’ve had a better Superpole and maybe, you never know, it would’ve been nice to get that podium. I want it so bad.
“It just feels nice to just see first place and see the podium. We’ve been not as close as that. Even in Race 1, I was still six seconds away from the podium and now to be able to reach out and almost grab it, it feels like a big improvement.”