Countdown to EWC Suzuka 8 Hours: A race and format with a difference
The legendary Suzuka Circuit in Japan hosts round three of the FIM Endurance World Championship next week (4-7 August) for what is a race and format with a difference. Here’s why.
As with all EWC events, two qualifying sessions are run in addition to testing, free practice and night practice. However, the Suzuka 8 Hours also features the Top 10 Trial shootout to decide the first 10 places on the starting grid.
Following Second Qualifying on Friday, the leading 10 teams go forward into the Top 10 Trial on Saturday afternoon. Two riders per team take part with each rider getting one lap to set their time. The lap times of each rider are then combined to complete the final starting grid for Sunday. The 5-4-3-2-1 qualifying points are awarded after the Top 10 trial rather than after the completion of Second Qualifying, which is the case at other EWC events.
There is also another notable difference with Suzuka counting for FIM Endurance World Championship points only. September’s 100th anniversary Bol d’Or is the next event on the FIM Endurance World Cup schedule.
In line with EWC rules, there is a lower allocation of points for races of eight hours or less with the top 20 classified Formula EWC category finishers scoring as follows: 30-24-21-19-17-15-14-13-12-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1.