Slovakia Ring, Act I!
The inaugural edition of the 8 Hours of Slovakia Ring will take place on Saturday 24 June. Various issues are at stake at the first-ever race in Slovakia, from the discovery of an untested circuit to the impact of this round – the second-last one of the FIM EWC 2016-2017 championship.
The first-ever FIM EWC race on the Slovakia Ring circuit is soon to get underway. The 8 Hours of Slovakia Ring – the fourth round of the championship – will take place from 22 to 24 June on the circuit near the Slovakian capital Brastislava.
For most of the competing teams, the discovery of this long (5,922 km) track will be a new sporting and technical challenge.
Slovakia Ring will also witness a no-holds-barred battle between the contenders for the FIM EWC 2016-2017 world champion title. Reigning champion Suzuki Endurance Racing Team arrives in Slovakia as standings leader, but GMT94 Yamaha and YART Yamaha Official EWC Team have been piling on the pressure, clinching the victory (GMT Yamaha) and runner-up position (YART) at both the 24 Heures Motos and the 8 Hours of Oschersleben. Suzuki Endurance Racing Team now leads GMT94 Yamaha by a mere 7 points, while 30 points are up for grabs for the winner of the 8 Hours du Slovakia Ring.
Maco Racing Team to play starring role
On the Slovakia Ring, the spotlight will be firmly on homegrown squad Maco Racing Team. The Bratislava-based team picked up third place at the 8 Hours of Oschersleben and is currently sixth in the championship standings behind F.C.C. TSR Honda, another formidable contender for the Slovakia podium. Maco is running a second Yamaha for this race on its home circuit, with Slovakian and Czech riders in the saddle.
Final face-off in Superstock
The Superstock clash will be even fiercer because the World Cup, reserved for this race category, will be awarded at the end of the 8 Hours of Slovakia Ring. Moto Ain CRT (Yamaha) is the current leader in class, 6 points ahead of Tati Team Beaujolais Racing (Kawasaki) and 12 points ahead of Yamaha Viltaïs Experiences. The battle for the Wold Cup will play out between these three teams. And – as at Oschersleben – watch out for Völpker NRT48 Schubert Motors by ERC (BMW), who will be chasing a Superstock win on the Slovakia Ring.
The first free practice session on the Slovakia Ring starts at 10am on Thursday 22 June.