Posted: 24 Jul 2013
The iconic Suzuka 8hr endurance race is to take place this weekend with some huge names from international motorcycle racing. The event kicks off tomorrow with the Free Practice sessions.
Favourite for the race is last year’s winner, TCC TSR Honda who return with World Superbike rider Jonathan Rea who will be partnered by three times British Superbike Champion Ryuichi Kiyonari. There’ll be tough competition for the Japanese squad this year in the form of Yoshimura Suzuki who posted the fastest lap in testing. Takuya Tsuda and Nobuatsu Aoki will be joined by Australian BSB rider, Josh Brookes – fresh off the back of his first win of the season at Brands Hatch this past weekend.
World Superbike’s Leon Haslam will also ride the famous endurance race for MuSASHi RT HARC-PRO alongside PATA Honda World Supersport rider, young Michael van der Mark. Forty-eight year old Kevin Schwantz will make his return to racing with Team Kagayama Suzuki alongside Kagayama and Noriyuki Haga – a team whose progress will be closely monitored by the media given the high profile riders.
Another BSB rider switching to endurance for the weekend is Milwaukee Yamaha’s Josh Waters, who will be joined by fellow Aussie Broc Parkes and Yamaha GP test rider Katsuyuki Nakasuga at YART. Last year’s third place finishers GMT 94 Yamaha will be returning with Checa (David), Foray and Lagrive while BMW Motorrad France will line up with Damien Cudlin, Erwan Nigon and Jason Pridmore, standing in for injured Superstock 1000 rider Sylvain Barrier.
Honda TT Legends will line up with Simon Andrews, Michael Rutter and TT legend himself, John McGuinnuess. Endurance World Champions SERT will be present with Philippe, Delhalle and DaCosta.
An eight hour endurance race in the heat of Japan is exhausting for even the strongest of riders and with endurance racing often throwing up surprises, it should be a good one.
July 25th (Thu)
13:30-14:30 [8hour] Free Practice 1
14:45-15:25 [4hour] Free Practice 1
15:40-16:40 [8hour] Free Practice 2
July 26th (Fri)
09:00-10:00 [8hour] Free Practice 3
10:15-10:45 [4hour] Free Practice 2
11:00-11:30 [8hour] Qualification 1: 1st Rider
11:45-12:15 [8hour] Qualification 1: 2nd Rider
12:30-13:00 [8hour] Qualification 1: 3rd Rider
13:15-13:45 [4hour] Qualification: 2nd Rider
15:15-15:45 [8hour] Qualification 2: 1st Rider
16:00-16:30 [8hour] Qualification 2: 2nd Rider
16:45-17:15 [8hour] Qualification 2: 3rd Rider
17:30-18:00 [4hour] Qualification: 1st Rider
18:15-19:30 [8hour] Free Practice 4: Night Practice
July 27th (Sat)
09:00-13:00 [4hour] Race
14:15-15:00 [8hour] Free Practice 5
15:30-16:45 [8hour] Top 10 Trial
18:45-21:00 [8hour] Pre-Final Event