Endurance – Bol d’Or

Champions deserved better

For their first race with the number 1 plate, the riders of the team Kawasaki SRC were really unlucky. Just as they were fighting it out with the front-runners, the title-holding team had to retire after a crash, all due a cursed slick of oil.

The opening round of the 2019/2020 season of the Endurance World Championship, the Bol d’Or turned into a nightmare for the team Kawasaki SRC. Having qualified for second place on the starting grid, the title holders successfully rode through the chaotic start to the race, the rain having forced the organizers to suspend the event shortly after 18:00. “We started aquaplaning on the straight,” said Jeremy Guarnoni. “Even riding behind the pace became dangerous. Stopping the bikes was the right decision.” The 83rd Bol d’Or was interrupted for a dozen hours. The race management waited until the weather improved to restart the bikes at 6:00 am for the next 8 hours. After starting well, the team Kawasaki SRC was among the leading quartet when the Honda number 5 broke its engine, covering the Paul Ricard circuit with oil. In the wake of Mike Di Meglio, Erwan Nigon was trapped without being able to react. “There was oil everywhere,” said Gilles Stafler’s rider. “I found myself on the ground without having the time to understand or do anything. I was able to pick up my bike, and I was about to start it again when Loris Baz fell in turn. His bike cut me down, and when it hit mine, everything caught on fire. I just managed to get out of the blaze, it was pretty terrifying.” The motorcycle being completely destroyed, the Kawasaki team were unable to make it to the finish of the first race of the season. The next meeting is in December in Malaysia for the Eight Hours of Sepang, a new event on the EWC calendar.