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RideFast Feb 2020

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I ended up doing the

I ended up doing the British Superbike Championship and that kind of kickstarted me again, emotionally. I got that fire for winning again. I didn’t go there thinking that I needed to finish in the top five. I needed to win. A lot of people thought: ‘well, that’s it, Scott’s finished, he ain’t gonna manage them tracks, he ain’t gonna do this’... I’m still that kid from Gloucester. If I need to race, I’ll do the best I can. It was the first time in my career that something actually went to plan. It was an amazing feeling that fired me up to come into World Superbike and try to do the same thing here. Now I do see that I have a longer career. And the experiences I have had in the past, even the hard times, are going to come into my strength in this paddock. Racing bikes for me is not fun. Risking your life is not fun. I don’t care what anyone says. Having a little ride around on a track day – lovely! Risking the limit on every corner is not “I ended up doing the British Superbike Championship and that kind of kickstarted me again, emotionally. I got that fire for winning again.” fun and I think every other guy here would tell you the same thing. If I’m not getting results, it doesn’t really feel worth the risk. I didn’t grow up around money. I don’t have money – if I want to retire, I’m not a multimillionaire. I do this to earn money and to thrive for the sport. I always said, I don’t have money to put in a team. We don’t have it, end of story. If I can’t get a ride for free, I can’t race, that’s it! That’s what happened in 2009. I had a really bad season; the bike broke down 24 times. I was fast, but with no results on paper – and that was me washed up, done. The teams were then asking for 200,000€, 180,000€ – I didn’t have 18,000€! And then Michael Barthelemy, from the Marc VDS Racing team, took me under his wing. He saved my career, there’s no doubt about it. I haven’t worked this hard all my life to then have to pay to do it. The problem is, there’s so many people out there now who do pay. That’s the way it is. It did make it hard for me but, at the end, beggars can’t be choosers. The good thing at the start is that I just had mad bags of talent. I was riding average bikes and putting them in positions they shouldn’t have been in. When I was riding for BQR, I don’t think they had ever got a top-10 finish – I won a race for them! First race I went to, I qualified on the front row and was in the top five, first round. That was helping me, I got where I was because of pure talent and hard work. I’ve got a big season ahead of me and I want to be ready 100%. If you want to fight to be the best, you’ve got to be ready for the best. And for me the best person is myself, so I want to try and beat myself every day. 32 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE FEBRUARY 2020