Joint Test Day 2
EWC 2022
Round 3

Team HRC Sets Fastest Time Again in 2022 Suzuka 8 Hours Joint Tests Day 2

jp Suzuka Circuit

Day 2 of joint tests were held at Suzuka Circuit in the lead-up to the 2022 FIM Endurance World Championship Series 43rd “Coca-Cola” Suzuka 8 Hours Endurance Race.

Team HRC Sets Fastest Time Again in 2022 Suzuka 8 Hours Joint Tests Day 2

Teams were divided into groups A and B for two test sessions, an 80-minute morning session and a 90-minute afternoon session. Unaffected by the typhoon as feared, sunny skies and extreme heat set the stage for the entire day.

In Group B’s first run, F.C.C. TSR Honda France (Josh Hook / Gino Rea / Mike Di Meglio) was second-fastest with 2 min 7.499 s, a fraction of a second behind the leader. SDG Honda Racing (Teppei Nagoe / Naomichi Uramoto / Ikuhiro Enokido) was fourth, Team ATJ (Satoru Iwata / Yuki Takahashi / Tomoyoshi Koyama) fifth, and Honda Dream RT SAKURAI HONDA (Sodo Hamahara / Daijiro Hiura / Yuki Kunii) was sixth. Murayama.Honda Dream.RT (Kosuke Akiyoshi / Osamu Deguchi / Yoshihiro Konno) also managed a 2 min 8 s lap.

In the second run for Group A, Team HRC (Tetsuta Nagashima / Takumi Takahashi / Iker Lecuona) led the field with 2 min 6.232 s. Astemo Honda Dream SI Racing (Kosuke Sakumoto / Kazuma Watanabe / Taiga Hada) was fifth-fastest with 2 min 7.483 s. Honda Sofukai Suzuka Racing (Yudai Kamei / Yuki Sugiyama / Jun Tadokoro) was sixth-fastest with 2 min 7.544 s, while TOHO Racing (Ryuichi Kiyonari / Takuma Kunimine / Hiromichi Kunikawa) was 11th with a best time of 2 min 8.802 s.

In Group B’s third run, F.C.C. TSR Honda France (Josh Hook / Gino Rea / Mike Di Meglio) set the fastest time with 2 min 7.981 s. Honda Dream RT SAKURAI HONDA was second, SDG Honda Racing sixth, Team ATJ seventh, and Honda Asia-Dream Racing with SHOWA (Md Zaqhwan Bin Zaidi / Gerry Salim / Helmi Bin Azman) was 11th.

In Group A’s fourth run, Team HRC was third fastest with 2 min 6.949 s, Astemo Honda Dream SI Racing was seventh with 2 min 7.720 s, and TOHO Racing was tenth with 2 min 8.634 s.

Sudden spikes in air and track temperatures caused numerous red flags halting proceedings throughout the day. Although Honda Asia-Dream Racing with SHOWA’s Gerry Salim crashed and heavily damaged his bike, he was uninjured and managed to complete the team’s tests on schedule. On Day 2, teams with three riders needed to consider how to allocate time and tests to each of their riders. As the day progressed, lap times improved on average.

Team HRC’s team manager, Kazuhiko Yamano said, “We ran all the tests we had planned for Suzuka 8 Hours, gathering very good data. Our competitors were faster than we expected, so we’ll be going into race week making adjustments and building our strategy accordingly. Nagashima and our other riders did long-runs well, and combined they make a great team.”

Tetsuta Nagashima
Tetsuta Nagashima 33
Team HRC
We adjusted to the bikes and covered tests such as confirming fuel consumption. The competition was also in the 2 min 6 s range, but we’re not really concerned. All that matters is preparing well heading into race week. We’ll train according to plan, and take measures to cope with the heat

Takumi Takahashi
Takumi Takahashi 33
Team HRC
I attempted to set similar times to Nagashima, but could not quite catch him. I did however set a 2 min 6.9 s lap during the long-run. The bike is different to BSB, so I’m getting accustomed to it, and my understanding of the bike is improving. I’ll be focusing on riding, and getting the feel of the bike. A lot of bikes were on the track, it was hot, and it was a while since I rode at the Suzuka Circuit, but it was a good test session

Iker Lecuona
Iker Lecuona 33
Team HRC
We managed to do a lot of riding during the two-day tests. I managed to tweak my riding style for Suzuka 8 Hours, improve fuel consumption, and do some complete laps and long runs. The bike is very similar to my usual WorldSBK bike, the only difference being fuel tank size. Power isn’t as high because of fuel consumption considerations, but it’s very similar. I’ll do my best in WorldSBK and prepare for Suzuka

Josh Hook
Josh Hook 1
F.C.C. TSR Honda France
I thought we could do more during Day 1, but the bike needed more setting up and fine-tuning. As the sessions went on, the changes we made allowed us to ride faster. On Day 2 we managed to make a lot of improvements, but we’ll do even more fine-tuning, going into a hot Suzuka 8 Hours which will be demanding, especially on the tires

Gino Rea
Gino Rea 5
F.C.C. TSR Honda France
Day 1 was the first time I rode the Honda / Bridgestone combination at Suzuka. I was a bit disappointed as my times were not as good as I wished. The bike setup improved in Day 2 and so did my lap times. There will be more tests during race week, so I hope we can improve the bike even more

Mike Di Meglio
Mike Di Meglio 1
F.C.C. TSR Honda France
Things improved a lot in Day 2. I felt I could have pushed harder in the first session on Day 1, but I had my concerns. After a lot of improvements, the bike got better and better. We’ll be working hard to close the gap with the leaders

Teppei Nagoe
Teppei Nagoe 73
SDG Honda Racing
This was the first time since the teams announcement that all our riders tested the bike. Our aim was to see what our lap times were considering fuel consumption, so we did well on Day 2. All three riders have the similar bike setup preferences, so we now have to work on improving our pace

Naomichi Uramoto
Naomichi Uramoto 73
SDG Honda Racing
Our lap times could have been better. There’s still a lot we have to adjust going into Suzuka 8 Hours. There are more tests during race week, so we’ll make improvements them. All our rider have similar paces, so I think we’ll be able to do well

Ikuhiro Enokido
Ikuhiro Enokido 73
SDG Honda Racing
This is my first 8 Hours race. The bike is aiming much higher than the JSB1000 bike I am accustomed to, so it’s hard to get used to the bike in a short period, but I think I closed the gap during these two days of tests

Md Zaqhwan Bin Zaidi
Md Zaqhwan Bin Zaidi 88
Honda Asia-Dream Racing with SHOWA
I could not participate in the previous tests, so I had a lot of catching up these two days to ride fast on the new CBR1000RR-R. The bike’s feel is improving a lot, but we need to do more to be competitive

Gerry Salim
Gerry Salim 88
Honda Asia-Dream Racing with SHOWA
This is my first 8 Hours race. The bike’s feel was very good yesterday, so I tried pushing hard today, but unfortunately crashed on my third lap. Thankfully I wasn’t injured, and we now know the issues we have to address, so I have a positive mindset going into race week

Helmi Azman
Helmi Azman 88
Honda Asia-Dream Racing with SHOWA
I have raced at Suzuka before in the ARRC AP250 class, but this is the first time for me on a 1000cc class bike. I’m racing in the 600cc class in the ARRC, so I have to adjust to a completely different bike

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