EWC Q&A with Chaz Davies: “Spa's just incredible and lives up to the hype”
Former MotoGP and World Superbike rider Chaz Davies is revving up to make his FIM Endurance World Championship debut at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps this week when the legendary Belgian track hosts the 24H SPA EWC Motos.
Riding for ERC Endurance-Ducati, the 35-year-old from Great Britain got his first taste of the 6.985-kilometre circuit during recent testing and was instantly in awe of the layout and huge challenge it presents.
You’re preparing for your Spa race debut, what did you think of the track when you tested there earlier this month?
“It’s cool, it’s one of those boxes you’ve got to tick, riding at Spa and now racing at Spa it’s up there with all the legendary tracks in all the rest of the world. It’s a hell of a layout, just incredible, it’s fun to ride and it definitely lives up to the hype.”
Given your lack of endurance racing experience what can you achieve this weekend?
“I’ve done a couple of three-hour kart races at my dad’s track 25 years ago, does that count?! That’s about as much as I’ve got so my experience is pretty much zero. But I don’t think you can go into endurance racing with expectations. It’s so unpredictable. Having followed the EWC for a fair few years, when you think it’s going to go one way it goes the opposite. I’ll keep an open mind to try and enjoy it, take on the experience of doing a 24-hour event and understand how I cope with it. It’s going to be new to me but I’m going in without any preconceptions.”
How tough will racing at night be, do you think?
“It looks like it’s going to be a hell of an experience and something that will probably take some time to get used to. But with time it’s something you learn and understand how the bike feels at night and how much you can push.”
What are your impressions of the EWC?
“You’ve got some really tough competitors, really good riders in the championship and really good manufacturers who are supporting the job so it’s a really competitive environment. It’s more about the team and the collective effort. And as Marvin [Fritz] and Karel [Hanika] managed to prove [when they did the World Superbike race as wildcards] last year in Most they did a really good job and showed they’ve got great speed even in a 30-minute race. So translate that across into World Endurance and you’ve got a really exciting and good championship.”