Refreshed after a brief break, Team HRC is now on site at the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours in France, where round nine of the 2023 Superbike World Championship is scheduled to take place this weekend.
Although there has been no Superbike race action for close to six weeks, factory riders Xavi Vierge and Iker Lecuona have both kept busy. Xavi competed in – and won – the Suzuka 8 Hours as part of a three-rider team, while Iker raced in the British, Austrian and Catalan MotoGP rounds as a substitute rider. The pair were also on track at Motorland Aragón last week where they completed a constructive two-day WorldSBK test. Having done their best to recharge the batteries, the Team HRC duo has continued to train so as to be well prepared for the final rounds of the SBK season.
The 2022 French WorldSBK round proved complicated for both Lecuona and Vierge, who were competing at Magny-Cours for the first time and had to deal, variously, with unstable weather and crashes. Now, with more experience and important data collected during last year’s event, Team HRC is confident that it will be able to do more on French soil.
Originally known as Circuit Jean Behra, the track was inaugurated in 1960 and staged its first racing event in 1961. Developed and restyled as the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours in 1988, the facility has since hosted both F1 and the Bol D’or. The track has long been a fixture on the Superbike calendar too, having regularly staged the production-derived championship since 2003. The circuit underwent extensive restructuring work in 2014. Measuring 4.411 kilometres in length, the track incorporates seventeen turns and runs in a clockwise direction. It is located close to the towns of Magny-Cours and Nevers in the Burgundy region of France.
Weekend schedule (CET):
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
15.15 – SBK Race 2