22
April
2018
|
02:42 PM
Europe/Amsterdam

Dunlop teams take three podium finishes at 24 Hours of Le Mans

  • Second place in EWC for Honda Endurance Racing after epic come-back
  • Moto Ain & Junior Team LMS Suzuki finish 2nd & 3rd in Superstock
  • Moto Ain takes Dunlop Independent Trophy win

After an unseasonably hot April race, Dunlop teams stood on the two main podiums at the end of the 24 Heures Moto – the iconic Le Mans event. Honda Endurance Racing overcame significant adversity to finish in second place and now lies third in the FIM Endurance World Championship (EWC) standings. In the Superstock class, Moto Ain (Yamaha) also finished second with fellow Dunlop team Junior Team LMS Suzuki in third.

Honda Endurance Racing was in the top positions in the first hour, but two minor issues dropped them down the order to 38th after two hours. 22 hours of recovery later, Sébastien Gimbert crossed the line in second place and joined team-mates Greg Leblanc and Erwan Nigon on the podium.

GMT94 Yamaha led this weekend’s race for 15 of the 24 hours until rider David Checa suffered an accident but managed to push the bike the significant distance back to the pits for repairs. After an initial recovery on track, a further accident resulted in another prolonged stop but the team persevered and finished tenth. The result puts them in second place in the championship battle, just four points from the leaders.

In the Superstock class for the Endurance World Cup, four different Dunlop teams led 354 of the 833 laps but ultimately the best Dunlop result was for Moto Ain who took the flag just 9.67 seconds after the class victor to finish second in class and seventh overall. Junior Team LMS Suzuki followed in third place and lies second in the standings, while Tati Team Beaujolais finished fourth in class, scoring enough points to retain the Endurance World Cup lead.

Moto Ain was the Dunlop Independent Trophy winner, taking home €5000 of the told €30,000 prize fund shared between the top 15 registered teams. Tati Team Beaujolais took second place with R2CL claiming third.

Edouard Carpentier: General Manager, Motorcycle, Dunlop EMEA

“We have seen an amazing race this weekend with plenty of surprises and changes of lead to keep us on our toes – that is what endurance racing is all about. We thank our 34 teams for choosing Dunlop and celebrate our podium successes today. Sport and open tyre competition means that we cannot always win, but our disappointment here will motivate us to be back on the top step at the next race.

“Honda Endurance Racing rode a fantastic race; recovering from 38th to finish second is a testament to the hard work and consistency that endurance success demands – so congratulations go to them. GMT94 Yamaha must also be commended for their strong race up to their accidents – leading 557 of the 843 laps is a great achievement which should be recognised. They are still right up there in the fight for the title this season.

Roland Wozniak, International Event Manager, Dunlop Motorsport

“Our partner teams used one specification of tyre throughout the whole race – from the heat, with track temperatures of over 40 degrees, to the cold of the night. The wide operating window of the tyre definitely showed its strength here. The conditions were not at all typical and after very limited dry weather testing over the winter the teams did very well in the extreme heat here in April. The tyres worked well and the teams were very happy with the consistency in both classes; it is the ability to put in consistent lap times across multiple stints that is essential in endurance racing.”