Carl 'Foggy' Fogarty: “The World Superbike Brits are absolutely dominant”
Superbike legend Carl ‘Foggy’ Fogarty believes World Superbike fans at Donington Park next weekend (22-24 May) can confidently look forward to more British success.
World Superbikes is the most prestigious superbike championship in the world, and British riders have remarkably won all 10 of the races so far this season. So from next Friday, 22nd until the end of racing late on Sunday 24th, Donington Park will once again be at the centre of the world motorcycling stage as host to the only UK round of a global sport which has already visited Australia, Thailand, Spain, The Netherlands and Italy so far this year. ‘Foggy’ believes that the current run of British victories is set to continue during the two races at the Leicestershire track.
“I’m sure the top four or five riders in both races will be British” the four time World Champion – and ‘King of the Jungle’ commented. “It’s great to see so many Brits able to win races! Fans going to Donington for the World Superbikes can be almost assured of British domination. These are the best riders Britain has to offer and they’re absolutely dominant at the moment in World Superbikes.
“I’m a big fan of Jonathan Rea and now he’s on a bike that can win races, he’s really showing what he is capable of. Leon Haslam is the local hero and I think they will be in the top-two, but I’m not sure in which order! It’s going to be very tight and exciting I’m sure.”
Foggy returned to the limelight by winning ‘I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here’ in December, but it was at Donington Park back in 1992 where he first came to the attention of the wider British public. His first win on the world stage came at Donington that year, and created history too.
The victory was the first time a British rider had won a round of the World Superbikes, and came in style too. Riding a customer Ducati, he claimed his first ever World Superbike pole position in qualifying for the opening race, knocking two seconds off the then lap record, set by Doug Polen, and then recovered from a fall in the first race to win the second.
“I love Donington Park, it’s my favourite circuit in the United Kingdom, and I had a lot of success and also a lot of drama there over the years! The years seemed to be good, bad, good and so on, but it will always be the place where I got my first win in 1992, but in reality I should have won both races.
“I led the first one comfortably but at Goddards [the final turn at Donington], I went off the edge of the tyre and fell. I got back up but the gear lever was broken and I was absolutely heartbroken, devastated. I was a privateer on a customer Ducati going against the factory riders and I believed in my ability and knew I was good enough to win.
“I was running the team myself, having to pay for parts out my own pocket and thought I’d blown my big chance. But I made amends in the second race and was able to put the first race behind me and win against the factory teams. It’s something that is rarely done and hasn’t been done much since. That catapulted me into the limelight and the rest is history I suppose!”
That was to be the first of five victories for Foggy at Donington, with further wins coming in 1994, a famous double victory in 1995 and additional triumphs in 1997 and 1999, securing his position as a Donington legend and a British sporting hero. ‘Foggy’ was awarded an MBE by the Queen, and had the Fogarty Esses chicane at Donington named after him too.
“It’s my best win, and my favourite” Foggy reflected. “The trophy was unique and whenever anyone comes round and looks at my trophies, that’s the one I always pick out. It’s a very special memory to win in the circumstances, being a privateer and winning against the factory ‘big’ boys.”
There’s less than a week remaining to buy advance tickets for the only UK round of the World Superbike Championship at Donington Park on 22-24 May, and save over 25% on the gate prices. Tickets are available in advance from £10 with free entry for children aged 13 and under. For more information and to book tickets visit www.donington-park.co.uk.