Double Dunlop podium in 24 Heures Motos
- P2 and P3 overall plus Superstock victory
- EWC season gets underway with 5 Dunlop teams in top 8
- Dunlop tyres perform in hotter than usual temperatures
Two of Dunlop’s leading partner teams finished on the podium in the 24 Heures Motos on Sunday, while another won the Superstock class, adding to Dunlop’s results in the FIM Endurance World Championship (EWC) opener held at Le Mans, France.
After 24 hours of racing in warmer than usual conditions, Dunlop partner teams Webike SRC Kawasaki France Trickstar and BMW Motorrad World Endurance Team stood on the podium to celebrate their second and third positions. Both teams restored their performance after setbacks early in the race, allowing them to capitalise on late-race issues for rivals during the final few hours.
The Webike SRC Kawasaki team, which won the EWC championship in 2018-19, chose to switch to Dunlop tyres this season for its No. 11 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10 RR, which is shared by its trusted rider trio of David Checa, Jeremy Guarnoni and Erwan Nigon. Despite brake problems early in the race, the bike stayed in the top five for most of the race and had a fairly trouble-free run to the chequered flag at 12:00 on Sunday.
In third position at the line was the No. 37 BMW M1000RR of Markus Reiterberger, Ilya Mikhalchik and Xavi Fores. For its second season with Dunlop tyres, the Belgian team is looking to build on its results in 2021. Its third-place finish, which came after a crash and mechanical issues early on in the race, is a strong starting point.
VRD Igol Experiences (Team Viltaïs) became the third highest Dunlop finisher out of the top-class Formula EWC teams, placing fifth in class. The No. 333 VRD bike was one of a number of Yamaha YZF-R1s racing on Dunlop tyres for the outright win. Another was the No. 77 Wojcik Racing Team machine that got caught up in a crash at the first corner, but the independent Polish team fought back despite having to complete the race with two riders.
David Auerbacher, Dunlop’s EWC Event Leader, said: “With the race moving from its April date to mid-June, we knew weather conditions could be hotter than usual. As a result, we were prepared with the right tyres for the changing conditions throughout the race, focusing on a softer rear compound in higher temperatures. At EWC races, we provide teams with a combination of our KR slick range and some new development tyres, and every kilometre raced on these goes into informing the design of our next range of tyres for use on the track and road. Our tyres showed great performance and durability in both the Formula EWC and Superstock classes.”
National Motos scores Superstock win and Dunlop Independent Trophy
Honda team National Motos celebrated the Superstock class win from fifth overall, meanwhile. Riders Stephane Egea, Guillaume Antiga and Kevin Trueb took the No. 55 Honda CBR1000RR to an impressive fifth place overall and the class win after a tense race-long battle for top Superstock honours.
The Superstock class is reserved for bikes that are more closely related to their road-going counterparts, versus the race-focused Formula EWC machines. As a result, Superstock attracts a wide variety of teams from all backgrounds and experience levels, consistently delivering an exciting battle to the line.
Three laps behind National Motos, last year’s runner-up No Limits Racing Team placed third. The Italian team’s Suzuki GSX-R 1000 was shared by Luca Scassa, Alexis Masbou and Kevin Calia, whose result secures second place prize money in the Dunlop Independent Trophy standings.
The Dunlop Independent Trophy is a key part of Dunlop’s involvement as a partner to EWC. Throughout the season, the Trophy supports the independent teams that are so important to the diversity and excitement of the championship, by awarding prize money based on finishing positions to the independent privateer teams racing on Dunlop tyres. A total of €40,000 has been awarded after Le Mans, including a first place prize of €7,000 to National Motos.
Auerbacher added: “Congratulations to all of our partner teams for a great start to the EWC season and the 44th edition of the 24 Heures Motos, but especially to Webike SRC Kawasaki, BMW World Endurance Team, National Motos and No Limits Racing Team for their podium finishes. Dunlop tyres were used by five of the top eight finishers, and that shows the quality of the tyres and service we provide to all of our teams. We’re excited for Round 2, the 12 Hours of Estoril, in five weeks’ time.
Dunlop Europe is one of the world's leading manufacturers of motorcycle tyres with an impressive track record of motorsport successes. Dunlop Europe is a technical partner of leading Endurance World Championship teams, the official tyre supplier to the FIM Moto2 and Moto3 World Championships and the most successful tyre brand in the history of the Isle of Man TT. Off-road, Dunlop is the choice of MXGP race winners and champions.