Munich. The season ends in the FIM Superbike World Championship 2020 this weekend (2nd to 4th October), when the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team will contest the seventh and penultimate race event of the year at Magny-Cours (FRA). The team and riders Tom Sykes (GBR) and Eugene Laverty (IRL) are confident that they are well positioned for the weekend with the BMW S 1000 RR.
After the season opener at Phillip Island (AUS), the 2020 WorldSBK calendar was altered as a result of the coronavirus. Since then, all races have been held on the Iberian Peninsula, in Spain and Portugal. Now, the WorldSBK is taking a trip to the centre of France. The ‘Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours’ is around 250 kilometres south of Paris (FRA). The 4.411-kilometre track is a technical challenge with various narrow turns, three slow hairpin bends and a long straight. Stability, braking and steering are very important on this layout. Magny-Cours proved to be a good circuit for the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team last year when Sykes finished on the podium in third with his RR in the race Saturday.
Quotes ahead of the race weekend at Magny-Cours.
Marc Bongers, BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director: “We’re looking forward to, according to the currently forecast, a typical Magny-Cours – with cold and wet weather. We’re already at the penultimate race weekend of this unusual season. For the first time, a limited number of fans will be allowed in, and I am confident that the conditions won’t deter the French fans – we look forward to their passion. In terms of our performance, we will try to keep in the same direction for Magny-Cours after the upward trend in Barcelona. Even though the track and conditions are totally different to those from two weeks ago, we are confident that we will be able to do well here. Even if it does nothing but rain, we are still well-positioned with the BMW S 1000 RR and our two riders. Magny-Cours gave us our final podium of the season last year; our goal is to head in this direction again.”
Shaun Muir, Team Principal BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team: “The team is really looking forward to Magny-Cours. Last season, we were very competitive there on the first year for the BMW S 1000 RR. Now we are coming from the last race at Barcelona where we were very happy with the performance of Tom and Eugene and the team. To finish the second race in fifth and seventh really shows what our expectations are so we would like to continue that progress into Magny-Cours this weekend. We are confident that we can achieve similar positive results. The expectations could be affected by the weather; it does not look like the weather will be very kind with rain on most days. The temperatures will also be quite low and we will see how we can adapt the BMW S 1000 RR to these conditions but nevertheless, we go as a team with a lot of optimism and we aim to continue the good form from Barcelona.”
Tom Sykes: “I am very much looking forward to the French round of the Superbike World Championship. I like Magny-Cours; I enjoy the layout of the track to be honest. Last year, we had a podium there with the BMW S 1000 RR so we are certainly hoping to pick up on the results that we had there last year. This weekend certainly looks interesting in terms of the weather forecast. The target will be to try and capitalise on the handling of the bike in these tricky conditions and hopefully we can aim to get some podium finishes before the end of the season. Apart from that all ready, prepared and looking forward to start the race weekend. I’m also looking forward to having fans in the grandstands again. We’ve missed them and it’s great that they can be back.”
Eugene Laverty: “It’ll be great to have the fans back at Magny-Cours. Phillip Island was a long time ago when we last had fans trackside and since then we’ve only had tumbleweeds in the grandstands! It’s still a little too early to look at the detailed weather forecast for the weekend but we are expecting some wet weather in any case. I had the opportunity to try the BMW S 1000 RR in wet conditions during practice at Catalunya and my impressions were good. Rain or shine – my aim is to continue our forward progress of recent rounds towards that top five.”