EWC

YOSHIMURA SERT MOTUL RESILIENT AT SPA EWC


Team Suzuki Press Office – June 6.

Yoshimura SERT Motul: GSX-R1000R – 4th.


The Yoshimura Suzuki Endurance Racing Team Motul dominated the first part of the second round of the 2022 FIM Endurance World Championship hosted by 24H Spa EWC Motos. The team then battled through a challenging night and posted a fourth-place finish after a tense final few laps.

As the FIM EWC Championship returned to Belgium, the legendary Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps lived up to its hype with its on and off-track challenges. Crashes, mechanical damage, variable weather conditions and numerous changes of leadership made this event very difficult for both riders and machines.

The Yoshimura SERT Motul GSX-R1000R dominated the first part of the race. Gregg Black started third on the grid and led the first lap. He then engaged in a close and competitive sprint-style fight with his main rivals before extending his lead.

Xavier Simeon and Sylvain Guintoli maintained the same high pace, allowing the team to increase its lead. Guintoli was particularly impressive on the SPA track posting very fast laps, at times equalling those of the qualifying session. The Frenchman broke the absolute race lap record with a time of 2.21.056.

The Yoshimura SERT Motul team retained its position out front at the eighth hour of the race and collected an additional 10 bonus points in the process.

The team was in perfect control and started the night with a significant lead over its closest competitors. At the 10th hour of the race, however, a gearbox issue put a temporary end to this domination. As ever, the Yoshimura SERT Motul team crew pulled together and after just 25 minutes were able to send the Suzuki GSX-R1000R back out on track in 14th position.

Two hours later, the team had hauled its way back to seventh place and was in the top three by early morning. The sudden arrival of rain changed the track situation and many riders, including Black, crashed on the slippery surface. Black managed to steer the heavily damaged GSX-R1000R back to the pits and the team pulled out all the stops to repair the bike in record time. A seemingly fearless Black returned to the race in fifth place.

As the 24-hour race neared the final hours, all riders were returned to the pits because of an oil spillage on track. This led to a lengthy suspension of the race. Once restarted, the EWC competitors were behind a control car for a few laps. Simeon respected the safety instructions and, once clear, rode hard to chase down third position on a wet and challenging track. His charge was slowed when back markers came into play, however, he brought the team bike home in fourth place and consolidated the team’s position as leader in the championship.

Yoshimura SERT Motul continues to lead the 2022 FIM Endurance World Championship with 106 points and an advantage of 15 points over the second placed team.

The next round of the series will be held in Japan at the 8 Hours of Suzuka over the weekend of the 5th to 7th of August.

Damien SAULNIER – Team Manager:

“I am both disappointed and happy. Disappointed because we are not on the podium because of all the problems we had during the race. Breaking a gearbox, it never happens! I don't remember ever having this problem on a Suzuki. As for Gregg's crash, it was an unfortunate race event. By the way, several riders were trapped in the same place within a few minutes. Obviously, these two hard knocks did not make our job any easier. But each time, we came back to the front. I am very proud of our team's work. In the end, we scored some important points and increased our lead in the championship.”

Yohei KATO – Team Director:

“There were ups and downs. We were performing well until the middle of the race; we led for a long time. The riders were very fast, and the technical team was also very efficient in the pits, especially by managing to replace the gearbox in only 25 minutes! Then we had some problems, but we managed to restart and move up in the standings to fight for the podium. Then the rain got in the way, and we moved up again. We showed great performances in the dry and in the wet. I'm really proud of the work of all the team members.”

Sylvain GUINTOLI:

“In Spa we experienced the ups and downs of 24-hour endurance racing. Leading in the first 10 hours, a mechanical issue, stop and-go penalty, crash, the race was mad. But our team did an amazing job to keep us going, they changed the gearbox in 25 minutes and repaired the bike with great speed after the crash. As riders we never gave up and kept pushing until the end and came out with very important points for the World Championship. Suzuka 8H next…”

Gregg BLACK:

“The goal here was to score points for the championship and that's what we did. Beyond that, we were above the rest in the race, whatever the conditions, day or night. We can really be satisfied with the work of the whole team, which was very good, once again. After that we were unlucky with a broken gearbox, which is very, very rare on the Suzuki. The team was amazing, and we were able to come back in the standings until I got trapped on a slippery track.

Xavier SIMEON:

“The team did a great job fixing the bike on two occasions. Our trio of riders also did well with a very solid race. We really had the best pace of the whole field; the Suzuki was working very well, and the Bridgestone tyres helped us get the most out of it. We really showed that we were the favourites for the victory.

SPA Image Gallery (David Reygondeau @ GoodShoot.com): CLICK HERE FOR PHOTOS

Championship Points (after two rounds): CLICK HERE




For more stories about Christian Iddon, Click Here. For photos, Click Here.

For more stories about Xavier Simeon, Click Here. For photos, Click Here.

For more stories about Gregg Black, Click Here. For photos, Click Here.

For more stories about Sylvain Guintoli, Click Here. For photos, Click Here.

Follow Team Suzuki Racing
Powered by Midlands Performance© Suzuki Motor Corporation 2004-2022
Top