Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari
Following Saturday’s Race 1 the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team prepared themselves for what looked to be a wet final day at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari. As the bad weather rolled in for this morning’s Warm Up it would be the first time that the BMW S 1000 RR would be tested in wet conditions. Despite this the BMW S 1000 RR looked promising on track as Tom Sykes ended the session in P9, teammate Markus Reiterberger closely behind in P12.
The weather cleared up ahead of the Tissot Superpole Sprint race as Tom Sykes took his place on the grid in P6 and Reiterberger P7, however a small issue for #66 Sykes forced him off the grid meaning he unfortunately had to start from pit lane. As the race got underway Reiterberger dropped a place on lap 1 and found himself in a battle with the Spaniard Jordi Torres, meanwhile team mate Sykes forcing his way through field now up into P14 on lap 1. Sykes continued his fast pace throughout the following laps as he battled his way into tenth now hot on the tail of Markus Reiterberger and Jordi Torres, eventually passing them both with 2 laps to spare. The Final lap of the sprint race had Tom Sykes chasing Toprak Razgatlioglu taking 2 seconds off him in the final 2 sectors, however despite the late charge would end the race in P8, Reiterberger two places behind in P10.
Following the Superpole sprint race the team’s attention turned to the final race of the weekend but with the rain clouds closing in delays were imminent as the rain began flooding the track. After long delays the organisers made the decision to cancel the final race with the safety of the riders the being the priority.
The BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team will now look ahead to Misano in just 2 weeks’ time as they prepare for two day’s testing ahead of Round 6 of WorldSBK at Jerez, Spain. (07-09 June)
Shaun Muir – Team Principal
“The summary of the day is that we proved again that the BMW S 1000 RR is getting very quick now. We have a good pace and I was looking forward to a dry race. In the Superpole Race Tom unfortunately had to start from pit lane. He did the sighting lap to the grid on race tyres. Due to the low temperatures, the tyre pressure slightly dropped below the limit. We will adapt the procedures to avoid this in the future. Tom’s race then was very positive. With his lap times he could have been battling for the fourth position which is a fantastic position to be in.
Markus went with a different tyre scenario. He was one of only four riders to opt for the SCX tyre. It was a gamble and he would have been very, very good if that would have worked out. But unfortunately he lost the tyre before the race was finished. But anyway, we are happy with the top ten for Markus. Overall we can say after this weekend that we are now showing that with its pace the bike can be fast now at many circuits. We can carry this forward and it’s also important that we will have a test in Misano before Jerez because we once again have many things to test.”
Marc Bongers – BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director
“After this weekend, we can draw the positive conclusion that our racing pace is very good. However, yesterday’s technical problems and Tom being demoted today meant that we weren’t able to make the most of it. I understand the decision made by race control and the riders that it would have been too dangerous to start the race in the afternoon. Even though it would have been good for us to ride in the rain, as that would have helped us prepare for the future. Overall, we take a positive attitude from Imola as we head to the next race.”
Tom Sykes (GBR)
“We just had a little bit of bad luck. The tyre pressure was finally correct but on the grid it was a little bit low because I made a slow lap to the grid. The chassis of the BMW S 1000 RR was working very well. I made obviously a lot of passes in ten laps. Sure, I’m a bit disappointed but we’re making progress all the time, the team works very hard and I am sure we will have some good fortunes soon. For now it has been a strange day, another race cancelled due to safety conditions, and now we are moving on to the next race where I hope the package can also be competitive. So keep working and hoping we will get the result we’re all working forward very soon.”
Markus Reiterberger (GER)
“This morning’s warm-up was the first time that we had raced in the rain with the new RR. I had a pretty good feeling. The conditions were changeable for the Superpole race. It was mainly dry, with some wet spots and we took the risk to opt for the Supersoft tyre. Unfortunately, tyre wear was quite heavy towards the end but I managed to cross the line in tenth place. We had to wait a long time to find out whether we would have a second race or not. It would have been important for us to gain some experience in the rain but the decision to cancel made sense from the point of view of rider safety, as it was really at the limit. Overall, we learned a lot in Imola and we will check out a lot of things during testing to help us continue to make progress. Thanks to the team for their hard work. We will all work hard together to reap the benefits of this work.”