Robert Schotman (20) has also confirmed to ride for the Belgium based MotoPort Kawasaki Racing Team in 2019 adding continuity to the highly successful outfit for the coming season.
Magny Cours race review:
Everything seemed to be running according to plan for Scott Deroue running up to the crucial Magny Cours round. The MotoPort Kawasaki Racing Team rider still believed he’d win the world title in Supersport 300 during that last fateful race weekend of the championship.
After the great victory at Portimão, the chance was there for the taking so at the French round Deroue had to try to gain just ten points over the then current World Championship leader Ana Carrasco. The Dutchman grasped the weekend right out of the starting blocks and scored the second fastest time in the first free practice, while Carrasco saw a P13 against her name. Despite a serious fall in the second free practice, Deroue secured a spot in the Superpole 2 while his Spanish rival ended up in Superpole 1.
In that second Superpole, cooperation with teammate Robert Schotman was very good for both riders. With Deroue taking pole position Schotman lined up next to him on the first row while rival Carrasco started the race from P25.
With a great start, Deroue went into the first corner in second spot and immediately showed his intent. A podium place for the Dutchman would mean that Carrasco had to end up at least in the top ten to challenge him - not an easy task in World Supersport 300 if you have to come from the 25th starting position. While Carrasco made slow progress, Deroue continued to fight for the leading position. It looked great for the Kawasaki rider, but with eight laps to go, Deroue lost his hope for the world title. With a technical defect on the gear change, Scott had to retire from the leading group.
From the pit lane he finally saw that Ana Carrasco held the lead in the championship by just one point ahead of Mika Perez. The Spanish rider therefore became the first woman ever to win a world title in road racing. A third DNF against the name of Deroue left him at eighty points, making him, as last year, third in the World Supersport 300. Still a great achievement, but the MotoPort Kawasaki Racing Team rider had the world title in sight ... until just eight laps before the end of the season.
Scott Deroue: "I hardly have any words for it, it’s very disappointing to lose my chance of the world title in this way. Normally I can never eat before the race, but this time I succeeded. That was just because I was very sure that I could set a good result here. Carrasco had a hard time this weekend, so the chance was very real that I would be world champion. I'm frustrated because I was so close. Eventually I am third in the final score, but understandably I do not feel happy with the end result. "
For Schotman the season unfortunately did not end as hoped. After a strong Friday and Saturday, the race was disappointing.
”I did not have a good start at Magny Cours and a bad first lap because I was cut off and I immediately fell back to tenth place. The group was very big and chaotic and I was not able to move forward. Eventually I was rammed from behind which caused my exhaust to break and I had to go into the pits.
The 2018 season has not turned out to be mine. From the eight races I only managed to get to the finish twice. We do not let our heads hang though and are working hard to be able to compete for the world title next year.
I want to thank my team for all the top work that they have delivered this year. It certainly did not reflect our joint efforts!”
Mentioning his confirmation for the 2019 season at the MotoPort Kawasaki Racing Team, Deroue commented:
'Of course I am very happy that I can put my signature on a contract at such an early stage - especially when that is with my current team, with whom I have experienced for two successful years.
Only the 'big prize' is still missing; the world title. After the bitter disappointment of this season, we will do everything we can to be competitive again in this class next year. We have already shown in the past that it is possible for us to achieve that goal. Now it is hoped that everything will be in the right place in 2019. '
MotoPort Kawasaki Racing Team would like to thank everyone who has made this eventful, but fantastic season possible. The Team, all employees, the fans and of course all our sponsors!
Special thanks to KAWASAKI and DENICOL for the great support and professional cooperation with these top brands.