Troy Bayliss Contemplating A Return To World Superbike Racing?

When Troy Bayliss decided to retire at the end of the 2008 World Superbike season, there were many people who believed that the three-time world champion had made the decision in haste. Although Bayliss was 39, he had just won his third World Superbike title, and was looking as strong as ever. But, he told reporters, it was time to settle down in Australia, and he had promised his wife Kim that his racing days were over.

Or maybe not. Retirement, it seems, is not sitting well with Bayliss, and the Australian legend could well be about to return. A reader emailed rumors of a possible return a couple of weeks ago, but we dismissed those rumors out of hand. How wrong we were, for in interviews with both and, Bayliss has spoken freely about a return to racing.

Originally, Bayliss had intended to scratch his competitive itch in the Australian V8 Supercars series, but his inability to get a ride in a competitive car has stymied that plan. That left Bayliss with a lot of frustration, as witnessed by his response to Dean Adams whether he had come to terms with retirement: "Not one little bit, not at all." Bayliss also told Superbikeplanet that he felt he had retired too early, still one championship short of British WSBK legend Carl Fogarty, and seven race wins behind the Brit. Despite the strength of the current World Superbike field, those seven wins should at least be within Bayliss' reach, should he decide to return.

If Bayliss does come back, then there is only realistically one team he would end up at. Bayliss is still a Ducati employee - as well as a test rider, due to test the 1198R at Mugello in the next couple of days - and was clear that he felt that Ducati is where he ought to make a return. However, with Bayliss' good friend and mentor Davide Tardozzi having gone to BMW, and the Xerox Ducati team in disarray, there is even a chance that Bayliss could end up wearing a different color altogether.

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Well, I will always love to see Troy racing but part of me wants him to stay retired and enjoy the great memories of his rides in the past, I'd hate to see him come back and struggle. Having said that, being the same age, I say good on Troy and you can do anything you want to :)

There is absoulutly no reason the BMW should not be winning races. However he's under contract with Ducati so I would see it hard for BMW to pull him away even if Davide wants him. If he's serious he'll be on the duck and he'll clean house. WSB is no where near it was last yr, its a glorified BSB series (other then Max). Haga doesnt have the drive and Fabrizio is lost without Davide. The Xerox team needs someone to jump start that team and thats exactly what Troy would do.

Cerebus said it best. But it makes my shoulders tight at the thought of him struggle even a little bit. Troy will do what he is going to do, I just hope he gets on a decent team. Going back to Ducati would not be bad, but for the love of god do not end up on Kawasaki or some other Team that cannot do it. The Ducatis are still good, just seems their Factory Riders are broken. Best of luck to whatever he chooses. Still a fan!

Altho some returns to business look painful (Belgian Justine Henin's new lease in tennis is less than joyful to watch when one remembers the total domination she was on that sport 3 years ago, and exemples are numerous...), these motorbike racers have that need to go out and do what they do best. And some of them are and will stay legends, whether they start to loose or not. Troy, I hope he comes back, has done marvels to the sport and to Ducati, and if he was to return and wins again, it would be wonderful. But if he comes back and painfully lingers along (which he won't) , well, no one would put the blame on him and that wouldn't make his past achievements less legendary.

If he returns, of course it will be Ducati. And yes, Haga is broken and Ducati Corse in WSBK needs to radically change.

Then it might become a Troy story within the BMW team...
Don't think the BMW deserves a legend like Bayliss, but if he's willing... I for one would love to see him coming back to racing !!!

I suspect he still has more then a few competitive season's left in if Edwards would come back for 1 more year.....

"still one championship short of British WSBK legend Carl Fogarty, and seven race wins behind the Brit"

I can imagine Fogarty reading this somewhere, swearing and looking for his helmet :)

Yes that would be Foggy alright... but I think it's fair to say that Bayliss did actually equal Carl in a manner of speaking - he may be one title and seven wins down, but he did what he did in a far shorter period than Fogarty.

I would love to see the two of them head to head on factory 1198s... last years factory 1198s :/

Bayliss has always seemed like a really decent guy. Therefore, I'd only like to see him come back if it seemed like he could be competitive. The ignominy of totally failing would make me sad. He wouldn't need to win the whole thing, just do well.

Xerox Ducati are in an absolute rut right now.Temptation to knock King Carl off his throne after 2 years of abscence.Brand loyalty coupled to Tardozzi's open statement that Troy was the best ever in WSBK.
Actually, I would like to see Troy more involved with Ducati off track,propelling their GP and WSBK efforts.