You'll never convince Erik Buell's evangelists that he and his bikes (now "EBR" machines) are doing anything but nobly fighting the good fight against the oppressors of the motorcycle racing industry. It's interesting that the Buell team has forged a relationship with European Giulio Bardi to run a WSBK team in 2014 but have they bitten off a bit more than they can chew? The radar gun at Phillip Island tells a shocking story.
Americans Geoff May and Aaron Yates are racing EBR machines in WSBK this season, but the fact that neither rider has much experience in WSBK and are rolling on new to them rubber (Pirelli vs Dunlop in AMA/DMG) aren't the biggest problems the hastily put together team faces at the moment. It's speed.
Things clearly are not going well in Australia for the Buell team.
The pair are 23rd and 24th fastest after two days of testing at Phillip Island and while their lap times are startlingly off the pace (the tenth fastest World Supersport 600 is faster than either Buell) the radar gun at Phillip Island tells an even uglier tale: reportedly, Marco Melandri's Aprilia was fastest on the gun today at Phillip Island at 199 mph while EBR rider Geoff May was clocked at 174 mph and Yates' reading was 169 mph.
With the WSBK season kicking off this coming weekend at the ultra fast Island circuit, the Buell forces will need a deep injection of speed if they want to become competitive.