Danny Buchan launches the Pro83 Academy

Danny Buchan launches the Pro83 Academy

Original News Source: MCN https://www.motorcyclenews.com/sport/british-superbikes/2022/march/buchan-pro83-academy/

Bennetts British Superbike Championship rider Danny Buchan has launched his own academy to try and help young British riders make their way up the motorcycle racing ladder.

Named Pro83, the academy has been put together by Buchan and business partner Gary-Lee Hoebeeck. The pair have been working together since 2019, and Hoebeeck is the founder of the Pro53 Sports Management and Partnership Agency. The Academy name combines the Pro for Hoebeeck’s company and Buchan’s number 83 race number.

The duo hope that Pro83 can prevent even more talented youngsters from missing out on their dreams due to their financial backgrounds. With teams asking for more and more money, it’s becoming harder for young Brits to move up into bigger classes, even if they’re successful.

Buchan and Hoebeeck have been reaching out to companies in order to gain support and funds for the academy. Money is then passed on either directly to the rider, or straight to their respective race team depending on said rider’s situation. No money will be required from the rider in order to join the Pro83 Academy.

“Our mission statement is that it just be about talent,” Hoebeeck told MCN at the official Snetterton test. “You get to a particular level, and the cost between doing Superstock 600 and Superstock 1000 or Supersport is astronomical. The paddock is losing talent every single year. In the support paddock we’ve seen people winning championships not racing the following season, it’s just heart-breaking.

“We’ve chosen to work with two or three riders this year. We had options to work with several more, or even potentially to run a team in one of the lower categories, but we took the decision that for the first year we didn’t want to commit ourselves too quickly and give ourselves too much work. We wanted to make quite a large impact with the riders we work with. It would have been easy for us to go and pick 10 riders and give them a couple of grand each, but as much as that’s great, it’s not going to make a dent in the grand scheme of things.”

Whilst Hoebeeck is on-hand to offer commercial, financial, and contractual support, Buchan is there to offer a rider’s perspective having gone through the tough UK career ladder himself. The SYNETIQ BMW rider is there to give advice, both when things are going well, and when things are a little tougher.

As well as receiving tuition, support, and guidance across a race weekend at the circuit, the riders will also be taught about the less obvious obligations that being a rider includes. Buchan and Hoebeeck want to protect the riders from taking the wrong decisions and keep them away from the politics of bike racing.

“I went from 2014 to turning professional in 2015, I was quite green to even paying tax, all those kinds of things, I didn’t understand how to turn myself into a business,” Buchan said. “I didn’t have media training, I never had anybody guiding me with teams and what to look for in a team – it’s those things we want to bring to the table to help those guys progress in their career.

“There are some teams that don’t operate in the correct way, there’s just silly little things that go on which the public won’t see. It’s very hard to police it because each individual team is their own setup. But then there are people around who I’ve met who will bring you forward and nurture your talent. It’s about putting our riders in the right places to allow them to grow, and ultimately have a good career.”

Pro83 Academy members will also have access to a large training facility in Wales, recently opened by academy partner Future Moto. Much like the VR46 Academy, Pro83 riders will be able to ride motocross, electric mountain bikes there, whilst taking part in trials and BMX riding. There’s also an on-site gym and accommodation, whilst riders will also receive support from Buchan’s nutrition and fitness coaching team.

“Land Recovery, Dan Beecroft and the Beecroft family are really happy and excited to be partnering with the Pro 83 Academy. What the Academy is doing in terms of supporting young athletes and giving a fighting chance to these people is brilliant, so we really want to support that. Motorsport should be available to everyone so this support will help their riders progress in the sport so we as a business want to be part of that by giving everyone the chance”

For the first year of the academy, Buchan and Hoebeeck will be supporting Zak Corderoy in the Quattro Group British Supersport Championship, as well as Evann Pendrill in the CIV R6 Cup in Spain. Pendrill may also make wildcard appearances in the British Supersport series in August.

Both riders will have Pro83 branding on their leathers and helmets, as well as the logos of the brands which are helping to fund the academy. Corderoy is racing for Gearlink Kawasaki this year after finishing third in Junior Superstock for the last two seasons, whilst Pendrill is racing within his own setup in Spain after racing in the British Talent Cup.

“It’s an absolute privilege to be involved,” Corderoy told MCN at the end of the Snetterton test. “For me, coming from a regular family which doesn’t have a lot of money, it’s quite difficult to be able to find the funding to join teams and make progress towards the Superbike classes. It’s horrible, I’ve had plenty of friends over the years who have had to stop racing because of this. We have a great plan in place now with the academy to progress and make it to a Superbike level.

Pendrill added: “It’s amazing to have somebody like Danny as a mentor for my racing. I’ve taken to 600 really well. We had the first test about the month ago and I felt really comfortable even on the first day so I’m feeling confident. 

“The plan is to learn as much as I can, and get as much as experience as possible – that’s my main goal. I’d love to be in the Grand Prix paddock one day, I think that’s everyone’s goal main goal; to get to MotoGP.”

If all goes to plan, the Pro83 founders hope to see their academy riders in British and World Championships, in production and GP settings. Buchan and Hoebeeck are not ruling out having their own team one day either, with riders working their way into that team through a Red-Bull-type structure seen in single seater car racing.

“The goal is that as they progress through the ranks and start earning a good wage, a little bit of that will come back into the academy and we’ll keep that circle of investment going around so we can keep investing in young talent,” Buchan explained. “We want to keep achieving by bringing young talent through and stop them falling by the wayside.”

So, what do they think the Academy look like in five years’ time?

“I’d say we’d have 5-6 riders, and obviously we’d love to have somebody who is flying the Pro83 flag at a British Superbike level,” Buchan said. “We just want to get the talent through. That’s the biggest thing. Our vision is to ensure that people are coming through, they’re being looked after and that it’s being done in the right way.”

Hoebeeck added: “If we can have a rider that we’ve supported and worked with performing at a Superbike level, for us, it would be a huge success. If that doesn’t happen for whatever reason then we’ll have to accept that, but I think a success story for us would be to have a rider that we’ve established and then have the next riders in-place ready to follow suit.”

Original News Source: MCN https://www.motorcyclenews.com/sport/british-superbikes/2022/march/buchan-pro83-academy/