Author: Oli Rushby Posted: 01 Apr 2015
Christian Iddon joins Josh Waters in the Bennetts Suzuki British Superbike this season and after a strong showing on the world scene in 2014, he’s raring to go in this weekend’s first round at Donington Park.
The 30-year-old makes his debut in the British series this year after two seasons riding world championship with MV Agusta in Supersport (2013) and Bimota in Superbikes (2014). He didn’t embarrass himself either, he took podiums with the MV Agusta 675 in what was its first ever season before impressing on the also-brand-new Bimota BB3 in the superbike class last year.
Iddon had planned to stay on the world stage last year but with the Bimota team forced out of racing after failing to make enough bikes to meet homologation requirements, he was forced to look elsewhere for a seat. When the option came up to ride for the Bennetts Suzuki team, he jumped at it and has his eyes set on a showdown spot this season. We caught up with him for a quick chat.
Where did it all start for you?
“I got into bikes because my Dad raced bikes. If your Dad plays football, you get a ball. If he’s a cricketer, you get a bat and I got a motorbike! That’s how it started and similar to a lot of lads I first raced motocross. I got a junior title but I was never going to be world champion in that field, it’s a flipping hard old sport! The plan was always to go road racing but we never had the funds to do it. At the time supermoto was coming through and we saw it as a cheaper way to learn the trade. Ok, it’s a motocross bike but it’s got slicks and you’re on tarmac. I didn’t plan to stay at it as long as I did but I got quite good and ended up being paid to ride round in circles! It came relatively easily to me and you enjoy it and crack on.”
“Then the time came where I made the decision to stop getting paid and fund my own racing on the short circuits. Sometimes I think ‘flipping heck why did I do that?’ as life was much easier before but hopefully the ultimate reward will show it was worth it; I don’t want it to be easy, I like a challenge.”
How do you feel about losing out on a world championship ride for this year?
“As road racers go, I’m still quite fresh. This is only my fifth year so in that respect I’m still progressing. I think the last two years at world championship have been really good for me. I’m disappointed that I never got a shot to ride a bike that was ready to go in World Superbikes. That sort of grates on me a little bit because I think we could have had a good shot at some good results. However, I’ll take this opportunity, grab it with both hands and see what we can do in BSB.”
The British Superbike championship is ultra-competitive…
“To be honest, I think the top lads are amazing but what is really incredible is the depth of the field –it’s ridiculous. I don’t think there’s a championship anywhere like it, that’s including world championship and every other championship out there. The depth of the field is tighter than any other series I’ve ever seen. There are a number of rookies this year, the top three Superstock lads have come up, there’s the British Supersport championship, me and Jack Kennedy from the world stage. In a lot of those championships those lads could easily lead the way but all they’re doing here is adding to an already stacked out field so it’s going to be interesting!”
What are you most looking forward to this year?
“The one thing I’m really looking forward to is getting in front of British crowds. Two years in worlds and you don’t see anyone! I know what it’s like to ride in front of the Brits and whether they’re supporting you or hating you it’s interesting because at least you’re getting some kind of reaction! I’m in to that, I quite like it.”