The return of Lucas Mahias as a stand-in rider for Can has already sent a frisson of excitement through the entire WorldSSP paddock, given that he is a top ten WorldSSP rider in terms of total race wins.
As Öncü’s breakthrough win proved in Race One at Mandalika earlier this season, the 2023 Ninja is still capable of taking a victory at the very top level of production-derived racing.
John McPhee (Vince64 by Puccetti Racing Kawasaki) will enter his fourth WorldSSP race weekend with a WorldSSP podium trophy already in his locker, thanks to a third place finish in the first race of the season. He is adapting his years of Moto3 success to his new production-derived category with increasing confidence, and has many years of experience racing in Catalunya. McPhee is currently 11th in the championship standings.
After suffering an injury in round one, Adrian Huertas (MTM Kawasaki), had a highly competitive return to racing at the previous round in Assen, finishing Race Two in eighth place after starting from the very last spot on the grid. Understandably, Adrian now looks to his first home round of the year with great relish.
Tom Booth-Amos and Luke Power (both Motozoo ME AIR Racing Kawasaki) plus Yuta Okaya (Prodina Kawasaki Racing) will again contest the ‘Europe-only’ WorldSSP Challenge class, having made their first race starts of the season at the last round in Assen.
Free Practice takes place on Friday 5 May at Barcelona-Catalunya, with Superpole qualifying and then Race One unfolding on Saturday 6 May. Race Two takes place on Sunday 7 May, then WorldSSP has three free weekends before the next competitive round at Misano in early June.