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Record number of competing teams

Record number of competing teams

09/09/2017 15:46

This season, 33 teams will be competing from start to finish in the 2017-2018 FIM EWC championship. The line-up of teams under contract in the Formula EWC and Superstock classes notably features five factory squads, with backing from Yamaha, Honda and Suzuki, and nineteen private teams from around the world. Their first face-off on the track will take place on 16 and 17 September, at the Bol d’Or on the Paul Ricard circuit.

Of the teams competing in the entire 2017-2018 FIM EWC (except for the Suzuka 8 Hours, which they have no obligation to race), nineteen are entered in the Formula EWC class, and fourteen in Superstock. They will all be in Castellet next week for the opening round of the 2017-2018 FIM EWC.

International flavour
This season’s teams represent twelve different countries (seventeen considering the riders’ nationalities): France, Japan, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, some Central European countries, the U.S., Australia and Colombia. This diversity only goes to show that the FIM EWC is becoming increasingly international.

There will be five factory-backed teams at the race start: French squads GMT94 Yamaha (the 2016-2017 FIM EWC world champion) and Suzuki Endurance Racing Team; Austrian team YART Yamaha, Japanese squad F.C.C. TSR Honda France, and British team Honda Endurance Racing.

Twelve new teams on the grid
There will be several newcomers too. Twelve teams with varying degrees of experience and ambition have signed up for the first time to compete in the full championship.

Belgian team Mototech EWC Team (Honda) made some initial forays into the championship last season. “This is our first full season; a whole new year for our team to learn and improve, says Mototech team manager David Drieghe. Our aim is to get up to speed and be competitive as fast as possible. But we’re only a small Belgian team, and our biggest challenge is raising the funds needed.

Zuff Racing Team, a young Swiss squad, debuted at the 2015 Bol d’Or. The 6th Superstock past the finish line at the 24 Heures Motos in 2017, this season Zuff Racing Team is racing the entire championship in the Supesrtock class on a Honda. “Racing one or two rounds whets your appetite, confesses rider Kevin Zufferey, who is also the team manager of Zuff Racing Team. It was our dream to enter the entire championship, but until now our budget didn’t stretch that far. Our goal is to get good enough to move up into the EWC class and become a permanent team, like Bolliger Team, and find ourselves some very fast Swiss riders.”

French team RAC41 Honda already has a solid track record. Created in 1999 by Arnaud Larose, RAC41 finished 3rd at the 24 Heures Motos and 4th at the Bol d’Or in 2010. After entering the races on French soil these past few seasons, RAC41 Honda has now signed up for a full season in the Superstock class. “We’re looking to chase a podium in our category, says RAC41 Honda team manager Ludovic Rezé. We’re driven by our thirst for competition and a desire to get ahead, especially with Eurosport bumping up the visibility of motorcycle sports in the media.”

Teams competing in the 2017-2018 FIM EWC

Italian team No Limits Motor Team has strengthened its rider line-up to take another shot at the Superstock podium. Michael Mazzina, Luca Scassa and Christian Gamarino will be riding the Suzuki #44.

The Endurance world championship is spreading its wings in Italy. FIM EWC promoter Eurosport Events has just signed a broadcast rights agreement with Corsedimoto.com and AutomotoTV.

Last season’s FIM EWC Superstock World Cup winner Yamaha Viltaïs Experiences will be fielding a new team at the 24 Heures Motos.

Moto Ain CRT has put together a strong rider line-up to go after the 2017 FIM EWC Superstock World Cup. Roberto Rolfo, a former 250cc GP runner-up, will shore up Alexis Masbou and Christoffer Bergman on the Yamaha #96.

F.C.C. TSR Honda France is hard at work preparing for the 24 Heures Motos. The Japanese team completed a test on the Okayama circuit, and used the opportunity to show off the new livery of the Honda CBR 1000 RR 2018.

Yamaha Factory has presented its 2018 teams. While GMT94 Yamaha will continue the season with the squad that won the Bol d’Or, YART Yamaha has announced a fresh rider line-up starting from the 24 Heures Motos.