Suzuka 8 Hours Qualifying Times
HRC’s Tetsuta Nagshima dipped under the 2m05.168s qualifying lap record earlier this afternoon at Suzuka during the opening qualifying session for the 43rd edition of the fabled endurance contest that is the Suzuka 8 Hours.
The 30-year-old Japanese rider’s 2m04.942 was almost a second quicker than any the other rider across the three separate Q1 sessions held for each rider in their respective teams.
Honda has powered 27 Suzuka 8 Hours winners and was unbeaten between 1997 to 2006, but Honda hasn’t won in its home round of the FIM Endurance World Championship since 2014 with Takumi Takahashi, Leon Haslam and Michael van der Mark.
YART’s Niccolo Canepa was second quickest with a 2m05.863 ahead of his team-mate Marvin Fritz on 2m06.138.
The fastest of the KRT trio was Alex Lowes on 2m06.204 and Astema Honda Dream’s Kosuke Sakumoto rounded out the top five ahead of KRT’s Leon Haslam.
Takumi Takahashi was seventh quickest for HRC ahead of SDG Honda’s Teppei Nagoe and F.C.C. TSR Honda’s Josh Hook. Kazumi Watanabe rounds out the top ten for Astemo Honda Dream SI.
The ‘red’ riders had their session affected by rain which saw them all understandably off the pace, thus riders such as Jonathan Rea, Mike Di Meglio, Kazuki Watanabe and top qualifier for the FIM EWC season so far Karel Hanika, all yet to record a dry qualifying lap. They will have their chance later today when all three team riders again get their own session.
Following that second qualifying session later today, the leading 10 teams then go forward into Saturday’s Top 10 Trial. Two riders per team take part with each rider getting one lap to set their time. The lap times of each rider are then combined to complete the final starting grid for Sunday. The 5-4-3-2-1 qualifying points are awarded after the Top 10 trial rather than after the completion of Second Qualifying, which is the case at other EWC events.
Taking the Le Mans-style running start at 11h30 local time (04h30 CET) on Sunday 7 August, riders race through the heat of the day, through sunset and into early evening with the chequered flag scheduled to be waved to the winner of this prestigious race at 19h30.
Kayo Sports will show the racing live on Sunday within Australia from 1215 (AEST) and it will also be on Fox Sports 507.
Suzuka 8 Hour Qualifying Times
- HRC – Tetsuta Nagshima – 2m04.942
- YART – Niccola Canepa – 2m05.863
- YART – Marvin Fritz – 2m06.138
- KRT – Alex Lowes – 2m06.204
- Astemo Honda Dream SI – Kosuke Sakumoto – 2m06.393
- KRT – Leon Haslam – 2m06.409
- HRC – Takumi Takahashi – 2m06.494
- SDG Honda – Teppei Nagoe – 2m06.733
- F.C.C. TSR Honda – Josh Hook – 2m06.740
- Astemo Honda Dream SI – Kazuma Watanabe – 2m06.801
EWC Teams Standings
|1||Yoshimura SERT Motul||Suzuki||JPN||106|
|2||F.C.C. TSR Honda France||Honda||JPN||91|
|3||YART – Yamaha Official Team EWC||Yamaha||AUT||76|
|4||TATI TEAM BERINGER RACING||Kawasaki||FRA||75|
|5||BMW MOTORRAD WORLD ENDURANCE TEAM||BMW||BEL||64|
|6||Team Bolliger Switzerland #8||Kawasaki||SUI||56|
|7||Team LRP Poland||BMW||POL||42|
|8||VILTAIS RACING IGOL||Yamaha||FRA||38|
|9||Wójcik Racing Team EWC 77||Yamaha||POL||33|
|10||MACO RACING Team||Yamaha||SVK||26|
|11||ERC Endurance Ducati||Ducati||GER||23|
|12||WEBIKE SRC KAWASAKI FRANCE||Kawasaki||FRA||23|
|13||TEAM MOTO AIN||Yamaha||FRA||21|
|14||TEAM GT ENDURANCE||Yamaha||FRA||15|
|15||Motobox Kremer Racing #65||Yamaha||GER||12|
|16||Kingtyre Fullgas Racing Team||Yamaha||FRA||10|
2022 Suzuka 8 Hour Schedule
15h50-16h10: Second Qualifying (Blue Rider)
16h25-16h45: Second Qualifying (Yellow Rider)
17h00-17h20: Second Qualifying (Red Rider)
18h30-19h30: Night Practice
Saturday 6 August:
14h15-15h00: Free Practice
15h30-17h00: Top 10 Trial
17h00: Post-Top 10 Trial press conference
Sunday 7 August:
11h30: Start of 43rd Coca-Cola Suzuka 8 Hours Endurance Race
19h30: Finish of 43rd Coca-Cola Suzuka 8 Hours Endurance Race
20h00: Post-race press conference
The Suzuka 8 Hours is back on the FIM EWC calendar in 2022 having not taken place since 2019 due to the global health crisis. Operated by Honda-owned Mobilityland, Suzuka features a unique figure-of-eight layout and presents a considerable challenge for riders thanks to its wide variety of corners. Opened initially as a test track for the Japanese motor giant in 1962, the venue hosted the first edition of the famous Suzuka 8 Hours motorbike race in 1978, nine years before staging its first Japanese Formula One Grand Prix. The Suzuka 8 Hours has been a popular feature on the EWC calendar and a key fixture on the international calendar since with leading grand prix motorcycle racers taking part – and winning – over the years.
2022 FIM Endurance World Championship Calendar
24 Heures Motos: 16-17 April 2022 24H Spa EWC Motos: 4-5 June 2022
- Suzuka 8 Hours: 7 August 2022
- Bol d’Or: 17-18 September 2022
- 5th Event TBC