May 15th, 2023
The 2023 FIM Endurance World Championship is heading to the legendary Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps for one of international motorcycle racing’s ultimate high-speed rides next month.
As part of the build-up to the event in Belgium, this is what some of the category’s top talents have had to say on the demanding 6.985-kilometre layout ahead of the 24H SPA EWC Motos taking place from 16-18 June.
Niccolò Canepa, YART Yamaha: “It’s such an amazing track. For sure [last year’s] race was really, really tough but I still have good memories from Spa, being so competitive, so fast to recover so many positions since the beginning of the race when we had a problem. We had a hard day at Spa, a hard night, we were pushing like animals all the time, this was really impressive and this was the race where we showed everybody what we could do.”
Chaz Davies, ERC Endurance Ducati: “It’s cool, it’s one of those boxes you’ve got to tick. Racing at Spa, it’s up there with all the legendary tracks in the world. It’s a hell of a layout, just incredible, it’s fun to ride and it definitely lives up to the hype.”
Geoffroy Dehaye, Motobox Kremer Racing: “It’s very, very exciting. Last year was the first time for me but all the riders like this track. It’s famous, it’s like a mountain course, very fast and long, the Raidillon is so famous, my favourite corner in the world. Spa is a little bit hard at night because it’s so dark but it’s the same for all riders and we have to deal with this. But I love this track, I enjoy a lot to ride there, especially when you are at fifth gear in full throttle.”
Randy de Puniet, Team Kawasaki Webike Trickstar: “The track is quite incredible, honestly it’s the best circuit in the world. It’s the perfect track for the EWC. I enjoy every part of this circuit, even the chicane and the hairpin.”
Mike Di Meglio, F.C.C. TSR Honda France: “It’s a special track but the conditions can be quite tough because it can rain in some parts of the track and in one part it can be dry. You need to respect this track and you need to go there before to understand well because there are many fast corners.”
Kevin Manfredi, Wójcik Racing Team: “It’s incredible, it’s another track, it’s not similar to the others. It’s similar to the rollercoaster and it’s very fast.”
Philipp Steinmayr, Team 18 Sapeurs Pompiers CMS Motostore: “The track is awesome and I simply love it. There are so many special corners here and when I rode Eau Rouge for the first time it was amazing, a really special corner.”
Markus Reiterberger, BMW Motorrad World Endurance Team: “Coming to Spa is always special. The Tarmac is so nice, I really love it. It’s just amazing with so much grip, so stable.”
KEY TIMINGS RECAP:
Thursday 15 June:
16h00-18h30, Malmedy parade and autograph signing session
Friday 16 June:
10h00-11h00, Free Practice
12h00-14h00, First Qualifying
15h15-17h15, Second Qualifying
21h00-23h00, Night Practice
Saturday 17 June:
14h00, Start of 24H SPA EWC Motos
April 25th, 2023
Wójcik Racing Team got both its bikes to the finish of an FIM Endurance World Championship-counting 24 Heures Motos described as “extreme” by Team Manager Sławomir Kubzdyl.
Christoffer Bergman, Mathieu Gines and Isaac Viñales were comfortably inside the top 10 on the #77 Wójcik Racing Team Yamaha until a crash on Sunday morning ruled out Swede Bergmann and left Gines and Viñales to ensure a 12th-place overall finish and 10th in Formula EWC.
The #777 Yamaha ridden by Kamil Krzemień, Kevin Manfredi and Dan Linfoot – a late stand-in for the injured Danny Webb – was forced into catch-up mode after Manfredi crashed leaving the starting grid. Their impressive charge through the order brought them back up to fifth in the Dunlop Superstock Trophy category before they lost one hour during a fall in the tricky conditions of Sunday morning.
But following a heroic effort from the Wójcik Racing Team mechanics to rebuild the bike allowed the #777 riders to return to action and finish 20th overall and ninth in the FIM Endurance World Cup-counting Superstock division.
With both PKN ORLEN-supported squads scoring points in their respective categories, #77 is ninth in the Formula EWC ranking with #777 sixth in Superstock.
“It was an extreme weekend,” said Team Manager Sławomir Kubzdyl. “Le Mans really reminded us why it’s the most difficult motorcycle race in the world. We haven’t seen so much drama across the entire FIM EWC field in a very long time, but both of our crews have shown a really good pace and determination. Team 777 had class-winning potential, but we’ve lost a lot of time after two seemingly small crashes. After the second one it looked like it was game over for us as the bike was very damaged, but our mechanics did an absolutely amazing job to bring it back to life, so a massive thanks to the entire crew.”
“Our team changed a lot over the last months, but Le Mans had shown that we went in the right direction – adds Team Principal, Grzegorz Wójcik. – The conditions during the race were very difficult as proven by the pretty high mileage of the Safety Car, but we were able to finish the race with a very good pace and no reliability issues, which bodes well for the rest of the season. Big thanks to the team, our partners and of course our fans”.
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