Honda Endurance Racing is ready for the beginning of the FIM Endurance World Championship season, which kicks off with the Bol d’Or (15-17 September). For the prestigious 24-hour endurance race the team will feature a new rider line-up with Gregory LeBlanc and Yonny Hernandez joining Honda veteran Sébastien Gimbert.
The famous Circuit Paul Ricard in the south of France will once again host the Bol d’Or, the opening round of the FIM Endurance World Championship (EWC). With big championship points on offer at the 24-hour race, Honda Endurance Racing will roll out their new rider line-up on the CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2 with the aim of securing the best possible result.
Endurance specialist and Honda stalwart, Sébastien Gimbert will line up aboard the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2 for the fifth consecutive year and will provide valuable experience to his new team-mates at the Bol d’Or Gregory LeBlanc and Yonny Hernandez.
LeBlanc is no stranger to Endurance racing, the Frenchman is a four-time winner at the Bol d’Or and will be looking to add yet another win to his tally with Honda. Hernandez will bring a fresh approach to the EWC after making the move from Grand Prix racing where he previously enjoyed a five-year stint in the ultra-competitive MotoGP World Championship.
The three riders have enjoyed a successful pre-season test aboard the new Fireblade, where they were able to gain valuable lap time aboard their endurance machine and make various tweaks in preparation for the first round of the 2017/18 season.
This new season will see the famous Le Mans circuit host the 24 Heures Motos in April, before the championship heads to Slovakia and Germany before finishing at the Suzuka 8 hours next July.
Qualifying for the Bol d’Or will take place on Thursday 14 and Friday 15 September, with the race starting at 1500 local time on Saturday 16 September.
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2017/18 FIM EWC Provisional Calendar*
16-17 September – Bol d’Or, France
21-24 April – 24 Heures Motos, France
12 May – 8 Hours of Slovakia Ring, Slovakia
9 June – Oschersleben 8 Hours, Germany
29 July – Suzuka 8 Hours, Japan
*Subject to change