Wheels are turning again in France: last Easter weekend, Le Mans (FR) hosted the curtain raiser of the 2016 French Superbike Championship (FSBK) and the French European Bikes Championship (FR EU). In both series, the BMW Motorrad Motorsport racers enjoyed success with their BMW S 1000 RRs. However, the teams and riders had to cope with unpredictable weather. Over the entire weekend, rain showers continuously caused changing track conditions.
French Superbike Championship in Le Mans, France
The French Superbike Championship’s (FSBK) 2016 season started with a great podium finish for the BMW S 1000 RR. Kenny Foray (FR) claimed a brilliant second place in race two on Sunday. In addition, he set the fastest lap of this race. In the first of the two turbulent races, Foray was fighting at the top, but had to retire after his front tyre was damaged by debris on the track.
Former Endurance World Champion Foray is a new addition to the international BMW Motorrad Motorsport family. The 31-year-old races in the FSBK with Tecmas BMW, an experienced and successful French team that is working closely with BMW Motorrad France from this season on. Foray will also compete in the FIM Endurance World Championship (EWC) as a part of the Penz13.com BMW Motorrad Team.
In total, four BMW riders lined-up on the FSBK grid at Le Mans. Nicolas Pouhair (FR) is a long-term member of the BMW Motorrad Motorsport community and continues to race the RR in the FSBK this season. He finished the races in 14th and 16th respectively. Cyprien Schmidt (FR) claimed 16th and 15th on his BMW S 1000 RR.
Foray’s young Tecmas team-mate Maxime Bonnot (FR) also finished the two first races of his debut season in the FSBK. He was 30th and 32nd respectively.
French European Bikes Championship in Le Mans, France
In the French European Bikes Championship (FR EU), it was a BMW rider who excited the fans with a brilliant win in Saturday’s first race. Fifty-eight-year-old Hernani Teixeira (FR) defied the adverse weather conditions that massively mixed up the order and rode to victory with his BMW S 1000 RR.
At the finish, he had an impressive advantage of nearly 22 seconds over his closest rival. In total, seven BMW racers crossed the line within the top-ten: Teixeira (1st), Julien Brun (FR / 4th) Richard Mathivet (FR / 5th), Benjamin Colliaux (FR / 6th), Michel Amalric (FR / 7th), Madjid Idres (FR / 9th) and Bertrand Boyer (FR / 10th).
In race two, the successful weekend for the BMW racers was rounded off by another two podium finishes. Colliaux was second in that race, which was no less hectic than the first heat. David Bouvier (FR) also stepped onto the podium, finishing third. He was followed over the finish line by a further three BMW S 1000 RR riders in positions four to six: Boyer, Manu Dagault (FR) and Amalric. Saturday’s winner Teixeira was eighth in race two.
Both series will hold their next round on 23rd/24th April in Nogaro (FR).