EWC: Podium for the BMW S 1000 RR on home soil


A second place at Oschersleben saw BMW Motorrad France Team Thevent  climb to second overall in the Endurance World Championship.

BMW S1000 RR

Oschersleben/Munich, 13th August 2012. In the battle for the 2012  title, BMW Motorrad France Team Thevent celebrated an important podium  at Oschersleben (GER). Damian Cudlin (AUS), Sébastien Gimbert and  Erwan Nigon (both FRA) rode a flawless race to finish second in the “8  Hours of Oschersleben”. BMW’s home round marked the fourth and  penultimate race of the 2012 FIM Endurance World Championship. This  result promoted the BMW Motorrad HP RaceSupport backed squad to second  in the overall classification with just one round remaining.

The #99 BMW S 1000 RR started the race from second on the grid. The  French-Belgian squad had missed out pole position by just 0.082  seconds. Cudlin rode the first stint, but dropped back to third on the  opening lap when the safety car was deployed in response to an early  crash. The Australian reclaimed second place later in his stint and  the BMW trio held this position through to the finish. After three  hours it was apparent that it was going to be extremely difficult to  challenge for the win, as it was impossible to match the outright pace  of the eventual race winner SERT. Undeterred, each rider continued to  push to the maximum during their stints aboard the #99 RR and Gimbert  took the chequered flag in second place, having held off a late  challenge from third place finishers, GMT94.

In the overall classification, BMW Motorrad France Team Thevent is  now tied on points with Honda TT Legends, but the race win in Qatar  earlier in the season means they take second place in the championship  standings ahead of the British team. The gap to series leader SERT is  now 19 points, and with 40 points on offer for the winner of the final  round of the season in Le Mans (FRA) on 8th September, the BMW team’s  title hopes are still alive.

“I think it’s fair to say we didn’t put a foot wrong,” Team Principal  Michael Bartholemy comments. “All three riders were consistently fast  and the team did a superb job once again at the pit stops. The only  problem was SERT, who were simply too quick for everyone here at  Oschersleben. However, the team can be proud of themselves, as they  put together a great race. Second place here means we’re now second in  the championship once again, and there are still only 19 points  separating us from the top spot. There are a lot of points up for  grabs at Le Mans, and anything can happen in a 24-hour race, so we’ll  go on fighting to the very end. We’re still in with a shout of the  championship, which is all the incentive we need going into the final  race of the season.”

“Obviously we were looking for the win, but it’s good to be on the  podium for BMW here in Germany,” Cudlin says. “Actually it’s good for  me too; I only live about 200km from here, so this is like a home race  for me! So, it was nice, but it would have been nicer to be one step  higher. We did the best we could and second was it. But it’s not over  yet. Anything can happen in a 24-hour race, so we’ll be pushing all  the way next time out at Le Mans.”

“Second place is not perfect, because I wanted to win and the team  wanted to win, but it just wasn’t possible,” Nigon sums up. “We all  pushed hard, but it was difficult to find the pace we needed to  challenge for the win. However, second place here means we’re now  second in the championship and the fight isn’t over yet. We go into  the final round at Le Mans knowing that we must win; nothing else will  do, so that’s what we’ll be pushing for.”

“Hats off to the performance of the team and congratulations on the  second place and podium finish at our home round,” says Berthold  Hauser, Head of BMW Motorrad HP RaceSupport. “Obviously we would have  liked to finish one step higher on the podium, but the team worked  really hard over the whole weekend, the riders rode a flawless race  and victory was simply out of reach for us this time. The world  championship will be decided at Le Mans – where we and everyone in the  team will do our very best to claim the title. It will not be easy,  but that also goes for all the teams who are still involved in the  battle for the world championship. Our RR team around Michael  Bartholemy can count on our full support.”