News 4 Jun 2024

How the FIM is bringing the Olympic spirit to road racing

Inaugural FIM Intercontinental Games to be staged in Spain this year.

An Olympic-inspired FIM Intercontinental Games set to launch at Jerez later this year is a bold new concept that could pave a refreshed path to international careers for Australian racers under an FIM Oceania effort. And the Federation Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM) is serious about making it a success as part of its 120th anniversary celebrations.

To be hosted biannually, the FIM Intercontinental Games will bring together the six FIM Continental Unions (CONU) – Oceania, North America, Latin America, Asia, Europe, and Africa – in what will initially be dedicated to road racing with Supersport and Supersport 300 categories.

Image: Supplied.

The event will see riders equipped with fully-supported Yamaha YZF-R7 and YZF-R3 machinery adorned in their respective CONU colours, and each union will select four riders to represent their region, including at least one female along with the option to nominate a rider contesting an FIM world championship as team captain. There are already tentative plans to expand the games and include other disciplines – motocross and enduro – as the event becomes established, likely in 2026.

It leaves at least two spots to be awarded to riders making their mark on the domestic scene, and the opportunity to represent FIM Oceania could very well put one of the Australian Superbike Championship’s (ASBK) own on the international radar.

The inaugural event, set to be staged in Spain, from 30 November-1 December, will see four races take place across the event – two for each class – where points will be awarded based on a rider’s ranking, while being added to the team’s total to determine the winner.

Image: Supplied.

“It is incredibly exciting to be launching the FIM Intercontinental Games that will bring together all six FIM Continental Unions,” stated FIM president Jorge Viegas. “It is a landmark competition that I have been keen to see happen since I first proposed it 22 years ago, and I am delighted that we will finally see the first edition come to life later this year.”

Dunlop will be the official tyre supplier, while riders will wear their CONU team colours with electronic airbag suits and gloves supplied by Spidi boots by Xpd, while Airoh will provide all riders with their FIM racing-homologated GP 800 helmets.

The new competition will benefit from exceptional TV coverage thanks to the support of the FIM circuit racing promoters Dorna who will carry out the TV production and Warner Bros Discovery (WBD) Sports Europe, which will ensure broadcasting on their digital platforms.

Image: Supplied.

“We’re very happy to be part of this new project and partner the first ever Intercontinental Games,” said Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta. “It’s testament to the sport’s history and its future that, even as the FIM celebrates 120 years, there is still room to build a new part of its legacy. We look forward to seeing the first event here at Jerez, an iconic venue, and congratulate the FIM on the project and this incredible milestone.”

The FIM Intercontinental Games event has been embraced by FIM Oceania president and Motorcycling Australia CEO Peter Doyle, who’s excited at the prospect of what the event could do for motorcycle sport in the years to come. Riders selected for the FIM Intercontinental Games will have their associated expenses covered, along with being supplied equipment, gear and bikes.

“It’s fantastic for Team FIM Oceania to travel to Spain and represent the Oceania region at an event that has an Olympic-style of vibe to it,” said Doyle. “The ability for this event to grow in the coming years by the additional disciplines makes this a truly unique event to get on board with.”