Bol d’Or – Suzuki n ° 1 leads the Bal d’Or … –

Suzuki # 1 leads the Bal d’Or…

Bol d'Or - Suzuki n ° 1 leads the Bal d'Or ... -

The laps follow one another on the Nivernais circuit and the fatigue accumulated by the pilots also wins over our eminent correspondents when it comes to finding an original title … Suzuki n ° 1 confirms its domination, followed by two laps by Yamaha n ° 94…

At a time when the sun reappears on the Magny Cours circuit, the Kawasaki n ° 11 team manager, Jean-François Gay, dares to believe that everything is still possible: the official machine of the Greens occupies the 4th place in two laps of the SERT Suzuki n ° 2 following a long cross-chase at the start of the night.

"We’re chasing third place", he tells Moto-Net at dawn:"last night it was bottoming out, but the team is determined and we hope to get back to fishing !"

Morale also in good shape in the team of Damien Saulnier, teacher at the professional high school of Le Mans Sud and manager of his team of students, the Junior Team Suzuki on the GSXR n ° 72.

"We had two or three small struggles since the start of the race", he explains:"we started 7th and we ended up 30th in the first laps following a puncture, a stop and go due to stopping the engine too early at the entrance to the pit, brake problems during the night, a replacement of platelets and off we go! Since early morning, everything has looked OK and the fall of motorcycle n ° 99 makes it easier for us to maintain the first place in Stocksports! The team is in good shape, the mechanics are a little tired but the morale of the troops is good !"

The motivation of this team of young students is heartwarming: "it is no longer a question of strategy now, we will try not to make mistakes, stay in the same lap as the competition and manage…"These students at the end of their training will end their time in the team with this 69th Bol d’Or. However, finishing with a victory in their category is rather promising !

As for National Moto (Honda n ° 5 and 6), team manager Christian Lavieille regrets wasting too much time in the pits: "we will not be able to go for the podium with the n ° 6. We will try to stay like that. The 5 will try to climb a little in the standings but overall we will keep up the pace", he explains to Moto-Net.

But at the start of the morning, a real twist occurs at National Moto: Philippe Dobe no longer has confidence in his machine! He "fear a problem"and carries out his decision taken during the night: he personally abandons the race and leaves the team! As for Ludovic Holon, seized with nausea during the last stints, he is in a state of excitement which also forces him to leave the handlebars to Sebastien Scarnato, the only one capable of taking the Honda n ° 5 to the finish…

Sebastien will therefore have to adopt a pace allowing him to hold on with two-hour stints doubled instead of one, but cannot perform three consecutive stints … We should therefore see him take back the handlebars shortly before 3:00 p.m. to pass the line.

"When we make a commitment with a brand we must respect it", believes Christian Lavieille, disappointed,"but apparently Philippe Dobe sees things differently

There was also consternation in the Endurance Moto 38 team, when at 8:32 a.m. Thierry Mulot fell due to an engine oil leak. A disappointing end of the season for this team from Isère very invested in endurance.

At the head of the race, the morning was also eventful: at 8:54 am Suzuki n ° 1 and 2 returned to the pits at the same time but the 2 was not expected! A power problem will prompt the mechanics to replace the gas tank. Guillaume Dietrich sets off again quickly, but the gap with the No.11 Kawasaki is reduced to one lap…

A few minutes later, the leading machine n ° 1 stopped in turn for the same type of problem, this time resolved by a simple additional refueling.

As for the GMT, which remains in second position two laps behind the leading Suzuki, the sunrise was rather painful for Wiliam Costes who "got tired", explains Christophe Guyot:"David and Sebastien therefore doubled their stints from 4 a.m. then William resumed his rank from 8 a.m..

Suzuki n ° 2 finishes this virtual podium three hours from the finish, followed by Kawasaki n ° 11 and Honda n ° 6.

Eric MICHEL and Marcus HIMSELF

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