After the double-header in Spain and Portugal, BMW Motorrad Motorsport is heading to the third round of the FIM Superbike World Championship 2021 (WorldSBK) at Misano, Italy.
The circuit on the Adriatic coast has proved to be a happy hunting ground in the past. In 2019, the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team. And Tom Sykes (GBR) celebrated the first podium finish there for a WorldSBK project that was still in its infancy. The Misano race did not take place last year due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
BMW Motorrad Motorsport is now hoping to build on that successful 2019 appearance at Misano with the new BMW M 1000 RR, which is in its first season as the WorldSBK race bike.
Sykes will be joined by Michael van der Mark (NED) in the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team. Misano is the home race for the BMW satellite team RC Squadra Corse.
Eugene Laverty (IRL) is competing for the Italian team. Jonas Folger (GER) from the BMW satellite team Bonovo MGM Racing is also very familiar with the circuit.
Quotes ahead of the Misano round
Marc Bongers, BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director: “We are heading to Misano with plenty of optimism. The first two races of the season at MotorLand Aragón. And Estoril took place on circuits that we already knew would be challenging for us.
Nonetheless, we were able to record some satisfying results, and even more importantly, we were able to test our new BMW M 1000 RR extensively under racing conditions. We know where our strengths lie and where we still have some work to do.
In Misano, the situation is entirely different to how it was at the first two circuits on the calendar. We have some excellent memories of Misano and showed how much we like this circuit at the last race there in 2019.
Of course, we will never forget the first podium finish with Tom. Now we are confident that we can put on a solid performance at Misano with the new M RR.”
Shaun Muir, Team Principal BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team: “First of all, we are delighted to return to Misano after missing out last year. For sure, 2019 was a perfect event for the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team, and now to replace with the BMW M 1000 RR will be good to compare our improvements.
Hopefully, we can repeat that success from 2019. We are going into the weekend both Michael and Tom coming back from Estoril with some new direction.
For sure, Michael is starting to feel exceptionally acclimatised with the electronic feel of his M RR. And that’s important. He is starting to feel like the bike can do exactly what he wants. And that’s a good step for him, so his confidence is extreme in that area.
On the other side, Tom still has some concerns over his chassis direction, and we will work on that in Friday’s practices. But hopefully, quickly, Tom can get into a good rhythm and prepare himself for Superpole and the races.
We hope we can get some good conditions in the weather. And we have some short races with no weather causing any issues because the forecast predicts some thunderstorms around that time.
Overall as a team, we are happy to return. We feel pretty confident that the Misano circuit should be favourable for us, and we are ready to get on track.”
Michael van der Mark, BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team: “Misano is one of my favourite tracks. I missed going there last year. I love the circuit, I love the layout, and I am looking forward to it.
It’s an entirely different track again compared to Aragón. And Estoril, but I think it will suit the BMW very well, especially the way the bike is working.
After some good results at Aragón and Estoril, a very different track and I think we can do well there. Regarding goals for the weekend.
It is still difficult to say where we expect to be, but I think we should be close to the top five. We had some excellent results, the gap is still a little bit too big, but I think the way the Misano track is, we can do well.”
Tom Sykes, BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team: “I am looking very much forward to the Misano round of the WorldSBK calendar. It’s a circuit I enjoy.
It will undoubtedly be tight in lap times as it is pretty tiny and twisty, so we’re looking to be competitive. We’ve had some strong results in the past with the BMW S 1000 RR, so hopefully. With the updated M RR, we can improve on those. That’s certainly my target, and it would be fantastic.
We’ve had a podium success there, so if we could do something similar this weekend, it’s what we need. Overall, it’s a fantastic location, and I am looking forward to getting out there.”
Eugene Laverty, RC Squadra Corse: “I’m heading to Misano feeling very optimistic. I set modest goals for myself last time because Estoril was the most challenging track on the calendar for us last year.
However, I exceeded my expectations, so my confidence is high going to a track that I enjoy.
The new BMW M 1000 RR has made a huge step forward this year. And I’m very thankful for the hard work done by everybody at BMW Motorrad Motorsport during the winter months.
I have gelled very well with my new team RC Squadra Corse, and we’re ready to begin moving up the order. The first two rounds were like pre-season testing for us. I feel that our season starts properly at round three at Misano.”
Jonas Folger, Bonovo MGM Racing: “ Looking forward to Misano. It will be interesting to see how the BMW M 1000 RR feels on this circuit.
I am hoping for a consistent weekend and that we can finish in good positions. I think we will be satisfied with that. I also hope that we can settle on the proper basic set-up for the bike at Misano, which we can then use in the other races.”
via BMW Motorrad