Suzuki Endurance Racing Team took the Bol d’Or 24-Hour victory ahead of Kawasaki Bolliger Switzerland and Yamaha Folch Endurance in the latest round of the Endurance World Championship contested in France over the weekend.
Among more than ten favourites for final victory, Suzuki Endurance Racing Team made a nearly troublefree race and won the 74th Bol d’Or with a fourteen laps gap.
Vincent Philippe, Guillaume Dietrich and Freddy Foray were battling against the Yamaha France GMT 94 Ipone all night long before opening the gap early this morning. The fourth and penultimate round of the 2010 Qtel FIM Endurance World Championship has been very hectic.
The best private teams did not miss the opportunity to make a great result as most of the favourites and official teams had more difficulties than expected.
The Kawasaki Bolliger Team Switzerland of Horst Saiger, Patric Muff and Roman Stamm finished in second place, fourteen laps behind the SERT.
Bolliger therefore keeps the provisional Qtel FIM Endurance World Championship leadership, with a nine points advantage over the SERT.
The 2010 title will be attributed after the final round in Doha, Qatar.
The Yamaha Folch Endurance ridden by Jordi Almeida, Pedro Vallcaneras and Jose Manuel Luis Rita took the third place only one lap behind the Kawasaki Bolliger.
The Suzuki RAC 41 City Bike is still doing a solid job. Gregg Black, Olivier Depoorter and Mathieu Gines finished fourth ahead of Yamaha France GMT 94 Ipone, who lost some time after a crash this morning.
The Yamaha 94, who arrived at Bol d’Or with new Michelin tyres after having started the season with some Bridgestone, has proven once again the value of its team and its riders, David Checa, Kenny Foray and Greg Junod.
In the EWC class, the Yamaha BK Maco Moto and the Suzuki RT Moto Virus finished in sixth and seventh position. BK Maco Moto scored the first points of the season and RT Moto Virus is moving up to the provisional championship third place.
They were outdistanced under the chequered flag by two Superstock machines. Sixth overall, the Yamaha Biker’s Day of Gregory Fastré, Raymond Schouten and Marc Fisette took the class victory after a very regular race.
They managed to hold back the Yamaha LTG 57 of Kevin Denis, Bastien Mackels and David Perret, who finished eighth and second Superstock bike.
Biker’s Day managed to put some pressure over the Team X-One, who were promised a class victory before they crashed. Unfortunately, gremlins did not help the Italian Yamaha X-One as their engine broke down in the antepenultimate lap.
The third Superstock position went to the Suzuki Endurance Moto 45 of Frédéric Bernon, Julien Diguet and Alexandre Lagrive, who stayed in an ambush all race long.
In the Open class, the Metiss JLC and its double triangle front end proved its track efficiency. The Metiss finished in seventh place and only Open machine classified.
The DNF list had barely been that long. 22 teams over the 57 engaged did not see the end of the race.
The favourites also paid the big price. The first to retire were National Motos, seventh on the starting grid. Sébastien Scarnato was involved in a collision was found with a hip luxation and could not bring back the Honda into the pits.
Around 5:00pm, a violent collision between Michelin PRT and AM Moto Racing meant the end for both of them. William Costes (Michelin PRT) was evacuated with a broken femur and Raphael Chèvre (AM Moto Racing) with a serious head trauma.
As the bikes had been too much damaged after some crashes, the GSR Kawasaki and the BMW BMP Elf 99 also had to give up, as they were racing for a podium.
The Yamaha Austria Racing Team, in a very good pace from the start, was quick to encounter some technical problems and retired Saturday evening.
The Team 18 Sapeurs Pompiers, who was holding a great fifth position, left the race around 3:00am due to some electric problems.
In the Superstock class, the Junior Team Suzuki LMS definitely closed the pit iron curtain after the engine was overheating in the beginning of the night.
The 8 Hours of Doha, next and last round of the Qtel FIM Endurance World Championship, will take place Saturday 13 November in Qatar.