WorldSBK Most: ‘When you look at the data, it’s not a big difference’ - Hickman

| | WorldSBK
Picture: GeeBee Images

Peter Hickman stood-in for the still not fully recovered Michael van der Mark in the official WorldSBK BMW Motorrad team at Most, and duly picked up points at the endlessly flowing Czech circuit.

He was enjoying the experience, especially as it was somewhere else this time.

“Yeah, I’ve done three WorldSBK rounds up to now, but they’ve all been at Donington. Then this weekend is the first round in WorldSBK outside of the UK, which is nice,” Hickman told bikesportnews.com.

“So, something new for me. I’ve never been to Most before. The circuit is really, really good. I actually love the circuit. The circuit is mega. Obviously, I’ve not ridden this bike here with the world superbike BMW team before. The bike is actually pretty good.”

Hickman is not on quite the same level - or at least modernity - of material as the other regular riders, it seems.

“I’m running older stuff, if you like. I’ve got the old swing arm and different forks and all the rest of it. So, I’m not where Scott is, from a materials side. But to be honest, I’m not going to be fighting for a podium anyway. So, we’re very realistic. I’m here to try and help and evaluate some things as much as possible and try and be as fast as possible.”

Hickman made a good transition and scored points, which is truly no easy feat in such a level championship with the riding line up it enjoys nowadays. And given he is upwards of 40kg heavier than the likes of Andrea Locatelli.

“It’s interesting because position-wise it looks shit, but when you look at the data between even me and Scott, there’s not that much difference,” said Hickman.

“It’s just all the little bits end up being a big bit at the end. There’s actually not much between us in a lot of areas. So, that’s quite a nice thing for me to know. I’m learning as much as possible.

I’ve actually changed the bike probably more than what I ever normally would do, which is difficult because then you ride a different bike every single time you ride it. It’s not ideal. It takes longer then to learn, and you don’t ever get the absolute maximum out of the bike. But, we also want to evaluate some things and get some data for BMW. So, that’s what I’m here for.”

In the previous WorldSBK days, when wildcards were more prevalent than nowadays, all riders would have the potential for two bikes in the garage, and far more practice time at each round, with four long session before qualifying even began.

“Which would have been nice for me,” he agreed. “Two 45-minute sessions and a half an hour session here today. The (FP3) half an hour session was wet (on Saturday) anyway, so I actually lost that half an hour. So, I only really have had an hour and a half, and then a 15-minute qualifier and then a race.”