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Roda targets ‘engine power and grip’ for KRT’s 2023 comeback

Guim Roda is targeting improvements for 2023 after Kawasaki lost out again to both Ducati and Yamaha in the 2022 WorldSBK fight.

KRT riders Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes completed the season third and sixth respectively in the WorldSBK standings with 34 podiums between the two but only six wins. The manufacturer battle also finding them in third position, for the second time in a row.

“It’s the season where Rea’s fought the most, that’s for sure,” Roda reflected after the final round in Australia, which saw the six-time champion take a victory in race one and two further podiums. “Unfortunately, he could not get the title back but I think it’s the season he really tried harder and we should be able to give him a better package to be more comfortable to fight with the others.”


While Rea was consistently part of the ‘Big Three’ battle across the season, teammate Lowes saw his pedigree increase after an injury-plagued start to his career in green.

“Basically, for Lowes, 2020 was a Covid year and only had eight rounds; not a lot of time to learn how to ride the bike,” Roda confirmed. “It was difficult in three months for him to understand. He struggled last year with injuries, so he was getting a big penalty for that. This third season he could start to work a bit more to understand how to manage the bike and stay strong enough.

“He’s showing the potential to stay in this fourth position behind the top three,” he continued on the Englishman’s progress after a double podium to conclude the year. “I think he was more consistent than others but unfortunately two or three more podiums from Rinaldi and Locatelli made the difference. In terms of average and consistency, race by race, I think he’s the fourth guy in the championship right now. We are sure we will give him better tools next year, and he will understand how to ride much better and he will be closer to the top three.

“We struggled a little bit more than the others when the track surface was not grippy enough and this happens in summertime with hot conditions,” the KRT boss acknowledged. “We need to improve this area especially. Other than that, of course, engine power is a thing we should improve.

“We have to understand how to cut this gap to be more competitive, especially compared to Bautista and his characteristics and ways to extract the maximum from the Ducati. Of course, BMW, Honda and Yamaha are working hard with their bikes. We need to work hard and react a little bit.”

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