Peris joins Team Suzuki

Calgarian joins Parts Canada Superbike team, replacing Picotte

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, Mar. 17, 2008
Suzuki Canada and Blackfoot Picotte Racing have added Chris Peris to their team for the 2008 Parts Canada Superbike and Yoshimura Pro 600 Sport Bike series.

The 21-year-old from Calgary will join two-time Superbike champion Francis Martin and Matt McBride on Team Suzuki. He replaces rider and team manager Pascal Picotte who is recovering from a string of injuries sustained since 2005.

“We’re quite excited to have a young gun like Chris join our team,” says Nathan Naslund of Suzuki Canada. “Chris has never really had a chance to contest a full championship series and giving him the ride on Team Suzuki will allow him to really show his stuff this year.

“All in all we have a perfect mix teaming Chris and Matt with veterans like Francis and Pascal. We’re sorry to see that Pascal won’t be able to ride, but using his experience for setup, and mentoring both Chris and Matt, will give the team a very good chemistry.”

Though he has raced in Canada before, this will be Peris’ first full season racing on his home and native land.

“For a number of years my focus has been outside of Canada, but the opportunity to race for an established factory team like Suzuki Blackfoot Picotte, with a lot of good guys who have been in the sport for a long time, is definitely a step forward in my career and more than reason enough to give a good run for a Canadian championship,” says Peris. “It should be interesting working with the team and especially Pascal, who I’ve always looked up to. I know I’ll have nothing but the best equipment at my disposal which is a real confidence builder going into a season.”

Taking the year off from racing will allow Picotte to devote more time in his management role.

“It was a hard decision to not race but my doctor said I needed to take at least a year off,” says Picotte. “Actually, I think it’s going to be very good for the team and for Suzuki. Because I don’t have to worry about racing myself, I will be better able to help Chris and Matt perform at a higher level. Not just the technical aspect, but the mental aspect as well.”