Chris Pike has been appointed the new Operations Manager of the Red Bull Honda WorldSBK team. The Ten Kate-run squad endured a turbulent 2017 as they developed the troublesome new Fireblade, as well as tragically losing Nicky Hayden midway through the year, and the team are looking to bounce back strongly in 2018.
Pike has WorldSBK experience as a rider and, more recently, as a crew chief to current champion Jonathan Rea in his final Honda years from 2012-2014. In his new capacity, Pike is hopeful that his input will enable the team to move up the grid this season.
“I am very happy to be stepping up to the role of Honda Motor Europe’s Operations Manager in World Superbike; a championship that holds many good memories for me. Although it is a return to a championship I know very well, this a fresh, new challenge for me and I’m looking forward to applying all that I’ve learned over the years to help Honda be a force in this very competitive series.”
Honda Motor Europe’s Head of Motorsport, Robert Watherson, expects Pike’s experience to prove invaluable to Leon Camier and Jake Gagne in 2018.
“Chris has been a part of the Honda Racing family for over twenty years and his vast and varied experience will be a real asset to our World Superbike operation. With Honda now having three CBR1000RR machines on the grid, expert oversight from both a technical and operational perspective is critical. In Chris I believe we have the ideal candidate to move this project forward strongly and help us achieve our goals.”