Le Mans 24H Moto: Final Qualifying
Posted: 14th April 2017
SRC Kawasaki on Pole – Foret: 'There's More to Come' - Grid Times Based on Team Averages – Weather Good, Traffic Less So...
SRC Kawasaki have taken pole position for tomorrow's start of the Le Mans 24 Hour motorcycle race, based on the average time of riders Mathieu Gines, Randy de Puniet and Fabin Foret. In the qualifying press conference Foret said that they would have gone even faster is they had not run out of 'soft' qualifying tyres. This will be his first 24 hour race and first time riding at night, which has taken some getting used to; “Last night I was going over the gravel, going over the curbs, but now I feel good about racing in the dark”.
SRC Kawasaki, Randy de Puniet
SRC Kawasaki's average time was 1:36.289, just 0.033 seconds ahead of YART Yamaha on 1:36.322. Yamaha GMT94 start in third place with a time of 1:36.717, Tecmas BMW are fourth 3with an average time of 1:37.000, Yamaha Viltais Experience are fifth (and top SuperStock) on 1:37.298, SERT Suzuki are sixth on 1:37.336, FCC TSR Honda are seventh on 1:37.780, Honda Endurance Racing on eighth on 1:37.875, Bolliger Kawasaki are ninth on 1:37.918 and LMD63 are tenth on the grid with an average time of 1:30.015.
The TTS Excent Kawasaki, with a form of girder front suspension, qualified in 1:39.877 with only two riders setting times, and the hub-centre steered Metiss qualified in 46th place on 1:1:41.433.
TTS Excent, Gabriel Pons
Twins, Girls, Etc
The all-women team Girls Racing qualified in 53rd place, with an average time of 1:43.088. The fastest Supertwin entrant was the Ducati Espirit Racing Team in 56th place on 1:43.595, ahead of No Limits in 59th place on 1:46.431. No Limits were the last team to qualify.
Girls Racing Team, Margaux Wanham
The weather for this morning's qualifying sessions has been good, with bright sunshine warming the track. The pitlane is as busy as ever and the crowds of spectators are starting to build. One of the biggest problems facing the top teams has been the traffic on the circuit, with 60 riders of differing abilities (by 12 seconds a lap) out on track in each qualifying session making it hard to get a fast flying lap on qualifying tyres.
Words, Photos: Martin Gelder