Next stop on EWC calendar Japan | Suzuka 8 Hours

Endurance World Championship 2019

Suzuka 8 Hours Preview

The Suzuka 8 Hours is just over a month away and the 2019 race is shaping up to be a memorable one, with the Japanese factory teams entering the race with one clear objective: taking the win to dash Yamaha Factory Racing Team’s (YART’s) hopes of a fifth consecutive victory.

Suzuka Hour Honda Start
Suzuka 8 Hour 2018

The 42nd edition of the Suzuka 8 Hours is also the FIM EWC season finale. Team SRC Kawasaki France, Suzuki Endurance Racing Team and reigning champions F.C.C. TSR Honda France are the contenders for the title.

Unbeaten at the Suzuka 8 Hours since 2015, Yamaha Factory Racing Team are once again fielding their 2017 and 2018 winning line-up. Katsuyuki Nakasuga, Alex Lowes and Michael van der Mark will be riding a Yamaha Tech 21 Shiseido in the historic colours of the first-ever factory machine to be entered by Yamaha in 1985 as they target a fifth straight win. The other Japanese manufacturers are hoping to scupper Yamaha Factory’s plans.

YART Yamaha

Kawasaki are returning to Suzuka with a KRT factory team. After finishing on the podium for the last three years as Kawasaki Team Green, this year Kawasaki Racing Team are targeting the win with riders Jonathan Rea, Leon Haslam and Toprak Razgatlioglu. The three riders are among the FIM Superbike World Championship’s Top 7. Jonathan Rea and Leon Haslam finished 3rd at Suzuka last year with Kawasaki Team Green.

As to Suzuki, Yoshimura have announced a line-up of seasoned riders. Frenchman Sylvain Guintoli, Suzuki’s MotoGP test rider, will be in the saddle partnering two Japanese riders, Kasuki Watanabe and veteran Yukio Kagayama, who is making a comeback in the Yoshimura colours. He finished second at Suzuka in 2011 before entering his own Team Kagayama, who monopolised the third step of the podium from 2013 to 2015.

H Oschersleben FCC TSR Honda France
F.C.C. TSR Honda France

The Honda colours will predominate at Suzuka. Having returned to the Suzuka race last year, Honda HRC have lined up Takumi Takahashi, the current leader in the JSB1000 Japanese Superbike and three-time winner of the Suzuka 8 Hours, alongside Ryuichi Kiyonari, the FIM Superbike World Championship rider with four Suzuka wins to his credit, and HRC’s MotoGP test rider Stefan Bradl all partnering to ride the Red Bull Honda #33.

The Honda fleet also includes Musashi RT Harc-Pro Honda, au Teluru RT, KYB Moriwaki Racing, Honda Asia Dream and Honda Dream RT Sakurai, not to mention F.C.C. TSR Honda France, who are still in with a chance of winning the 2018-2019 FIM EWC title, and Honda Endurance Racing, who will be seeking retaliation after being forced to withdraw at Oschersleben.

FIM EWC LeMans Hour SRC Kawasaki Pit
Team SRC Kawasaki France

In the run-up to the Grand Finale, Team SRC Kawasaki France lead the standings with 132 points ahead of Suzuki Endurance Racing Team, with 127 points, and F.C.C. TSR Honda France, with 109.

Their goal is to take on the top Japanese teams on their home ground and seize the opportunity offered by the season finale to score 150% of the regular points in order to claim the world title with 45 points are awarded to the winner of the Suzuka 8 Hours.

The 42nd edition of the Suzuka 8 Hours will be held in Japan on Sunday 28 July.

2019 Endurance World Championship Standings

Pos Team / Equipe Total
1 Team Src Kawasaki France 132
2 Suzuki Endurance Racing Team 127
3 F.C.C. Tsr Honda France 109
4 Wepol Racing 101
5 Yart – Yamaha 88
6 Honda Endurance Racing 79
7 Bolliger Team Switzerland 73
8 Vrd Igol Pierret Experiences 53
9 Moto Ain 45
10 Gert56 By Gs Yuasa 45
11 Bmrt 3d Maccio Racing 39
12 Fany Gastro Bmw Motorrad- By Mercury Racing 38
13 Webike Tati Team Trickstar 36
14 Team 33 Coyote  Louit Moto 32
15 Junior Team Lms Suzuki 30
16 Wójcik Racing Team 2 28
17 No Limits Motor Team 28
18 3art- Moto Team 95 27
19 National Motos 25
20 Motors Events 24
21 Motobox Kremer Racing #65 24
22 Wójcik Racing Team 23
23 Team Erc-Bmw Motorrad Endurance 14
24 Team 18 Sapeurs Pompiers 12
25 Team Lrp Poland 12
26 Maco Racing Team 12
27 Jma Motos Action Bike 8
28 Og Motorsport By Sarazin 7
29 Zuff Racing Team 6
30 Am Moto Racing Competition 5
31 Mototech Ewc Team 4
32 Pitlane Endurance 3
33 Gsm Racing 2
34 Slider Endurance 1
35 Falcon Racing Rennes Motos 1
36 Set Racing 1


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *