With the summer break now over, Team HRC is already setting up at the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours in France, where round seven of the 2022 Superbike World Championship is set to play out this weekend.
SBK rookie Iker Lecuona heads into this second half of the championship lying sixth in the general standings, just seven points from fifth, having achieved a top ten finish in every race (including a podium in the second race at Assen), except for Race2 in the Czech Republic, where he had to retire through no fault of his own. Despite a couple of crashes and resulting injuries affecting some of his races and tests, Xavi Vierge currently places tenth in what is a similarly impressive rookie season, a close fourth-place finish in the Misano Superpole Race his best result to date.
With six rounds still to run, the Spanish duo have ample opportunity to build on such encouraging results. The work has continued throughout the summer, with Team HRC very eager to keep the momentum going. The riders have also kept busy, with a very positive two-day testing session in Barcelona on 20-21 August following on from an unforgettable race week in Japan for Lecuona in early August. Iker went so far as to score an historic victory in the Suzuka 8 Hours endurance race aboard the CBR1000RR-R SP, alongside fast and experienced team-mates Tetsuta Nagashima and Takumi Takahashi. Honda’s 28th success in one of the world’s most iconic race was also the factory’s first win since 2014, and a major achievement for the Spanish rider at just 22 years of age.
Located close to the towns of Magny-Cours and Nevers in the Burgundy region of France, the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours was constructed in 1960. A regular fixture on the Superbike calendar, the circuit has been hosting the production-derived championship since 2003 but has also staged MotoGP and F1 races in the past. Measuring 4.411 kilometres in length, the track incorporates seventeen turns and runs in a clockwise direction.
10.30 – 11.15 – SBK Free Practice 1
15.00 – 15.45 – SBK Free Practice 2
9.00 – 9.30 – SBK Free Practice 3
11.10 – 11.25 – Superpole
14.00 – SBK Race 1
9.00 – 9.15 – SBK Warm-up
11.00 – Superpole race
14.00 – SBK Race 2