Loris Baz re-signs with Ten Kate Yamaha for 2020 WorldSBK

Loris Baz secures his place on the 2020 WorldSBK Championship with the Ten Kate Racing Yamaha team after a successful part-season campaign in 2019

Loris Baz - Ten Kate Racing Yamaha

Loris Baz will continue with the Ten Kate Yamaha team in the 2020 WorldSBK Championship following the revived team’s successful return to competition in 2019.

The Dutch-based effort slipped off the entry list ahead of the 2019 season following the abrupt end of its long-term collaboration with Honda, a partnership that yielded one WorldSBK title, 42 wins and 85 podiums over a period of more than ten years.

From the ashes, Ten Kate Racing regrouped and returned to WorldSBK competition mid-way through the 2019 after a switch to customer Yamaha machinery armed with Baz, who was also left without a ride at the end of the previous season.

Competitive from the outset, as expected Baz and Ten Kate Yamaha will join forces again for the 2020 WorldSBK season.

 “I am really looking forward to it because in 2019, it was really special, and we’ve been doing some great things, but it has also been difficult. Learning the bike every weekend without any tests, just two days mid-season, and we have so many things to test.

“I am really looking forward to it, I am sure we can improve the bike so we can fight at the front every weekend next year. I know the team is really looking forward to it as well, so it will be an exciting 2020 season with Ten Kate Yamaha for sure.”

Is Loris Baz the dark horse of 2020 WorldSBK?

Despite the late formation, Baz and Ten Kate Yamaha enjoyed an eye-catching second half to the WorldSBK season, picking up 15 top ten finishes and a trio of fourth place results.

As such, even though Baz missed 13 of the 37 races, he still managed to claw himself up to tenth in the overall classification by the season’s end.

A consistent thorn in the side of the factory Yamahas in terms of race pace, Ten Kate Racing proved quicker than the sister GRT satellite team during the closing stages of the season, though things might be a little different now the Italian outfit is the regarded as the manufacturer’s official Junior team.

However, what Ten Kate does have in its armoury is its confidence in developing the new Yamaha R1 in its own vision, developing its own electronics package to adapt round Baz’s evident strengths on the machine.

Provided the base R1 is competitive, Baz could be a threat for wins in 2020.