The International Motorcycling Federation (FIM) and promoter Dorna announced a new entry-level racing class that will join the World Superbike Championship in 2017. The new Supersport 300 World Championship will open a new avenue for developing young racers while also giving manufacturers a venue to showcase their small-displacement sportbikes.
“This new platform will be the perfect environment for developing future talent,” says Vito Ippolito, President of FIM. “The intention of WorldSSP 300 is to create a benchmark for National Championships to follow. We want to offer an environment that is regulated and relatively equal in which future talent can grow, and where manufacturers can accompany young riders as they take their first steps towards stardom.”
Though it’s called the Supersport 300 class, the series is not limited to a displacement of 300cc. Instead, the initial regulations include motorcycles sold in the A2 class in Europe, that is, motorcycles producing less than 47 hp. At the moment, the FIM has homologated four eligible motorcycles: the Honda CBR500R, the Kawasaki Ninja 300, the KTM RC390 and the Yamaha YZF-R3.
Of course, more motorcycles can be added with approval by the Superbike Commission. Incidentally, the announcement on the official WSBK website includes a glimpse of what looks like the Honda CBR250RR. Considering the CBR250RR has only been announced for Asian markets, this offers the first evidence that Honda will bring its newest lightweight supersport to Western markets. This also suggests that Honda will indeed offer a larger-displacement version for Europe (and hopefully North America as well), likely as a CBR300RR, unless the company is willing to pit its brand new 250cc Twin against the likes of the RC390 which offers an engine that is 50% larger.