The change was decided at the latest FIM Superbike Commission meeting in Portimao and will be trialled in the final part of the 2022 season before full implementation next year.

It is the latest measure taken by WSBK in an attempt to level the playing field for various manufacturers, which began in earnest with the introduction of a regulated rev limit and engine allowance system in 2018.

The previous concession system used a points system for the top three finishers in any main race (excluding Superpole races), but this has now been expanded to include the top five, with points awarded every three rounds.

These will be used to determine whether a manufacturer can claim new “super benefits” that will allow a compliant marque to retrofit chassis parts not used on a production model.

Honda, currently at the bottom of the manufacturer rankings in the third year of the new CBR1000RR-R, is expected to be the main beneficiary of the new system as it continues to struggle for competitiveness.

Insiders suspect that the Fireblade has a fundamental incompatibility with WSBK’s control Pirelli tires that can only be resolved with new chassis parts that the rules previously did not allow without introducing an entirely new homologation – something Honda has ruled out for 2023.

A dominant victory in the 8 Hours of Suzuka, where Bridgestone tires are used instead of Pirellis, lends weight to this thesis.

#33 Team HRC, Tetsuta Nagashima

Photo: Jun Goto

The new ‘super concession’ system follows on from another measure announced earlier this year aimed at leveling the playing field, use of concession clauses to define testing restrictions.

One of the other changes made in Portimao was that WSBK will follow sister championship MotoGP’s initiative to introduce E40 fuel, which contains 40 percent sustainable fuel, in all classes from 2024.

In addition, the WSBK certification price cap will be lifted from the current level of €40,000 due to global economic conditions.

The exact amount by which it will be increased has yet to be officially announced, but it is likely to be around €45,000 to accommodate the newly unveiled 2023 Ducati V4 R Panigale.