De Puniet: Not giving up at Le Mans vital for Spa EWC bid

2022-05-10T23:47:28+02:00May 4th, 2022|2022|

Randy de Puniet says giving up in the 24 Heures Motos was never an option for him and his Webike SRC Kawasaki France team-mates.

The French squad was forced to pit for more than one hour during the FIM Endurance World Championship opener when an engine issue struck its new-for-2022 Kawasaki ZX 10R.

But with development time limited ahead of Le Mans, de Puniet said it was vital that Webike SRC Kawasaki France returned to the action to boost its bid for a better result in next month’s 24H SPA EWC Motos.

Speaking during Eurosport’s live coverage of the 24 Heures Motos last month, 41-year-old de Puniet said: “It was a really difficult week and race. Before we broke the engine we had quite a good pace compared to the practice and the qualifying so we were quite happy. Suddenly we had some trouble with the engine, the team decided to change the top of the engine and start one hour after that but it was really important for us to restart the race because we needed to learn many things about the new bike because everything is new, we had zero test before the pre-Le Mans test so we needed to do some kilometres with the bike and find something better for Spa.”

De Puniet explained the delays Gilles Stafler’s team experienced taking delivery of vital components hampered pre-season preparations.

“With the pandemic everything is too long and we received everything five days before the Le Mans Pre-Test,” said de Puniet. “At one point we didn’t know if we were able to ride at the Pre-Test so for sure we are disappointed because to start the season like this is not so easy. But, anyway, we needed to learn to be more competitive in Spa.”