The Honda Endurance Racing team has arrived in Japan ahead of the grand finale of the 2016-2017 FIM Endurance World Championship, the 40th anniversary of the Suzuka 8 Hours, this weekend (27-30 July).

Fresh from scoring a podium at the 8 Hours of Slovakia Ring, where the team finished third, Honda’s endurance specialists Freddy Foray, Julien Da Costa and Sébastien Gimbert will battle the heat and extreme conditions at the 5.821km Honda-owned circuit, aboard the all-new Fireblade against a competitive field, including their usual EWC rivals and a host of specialist Japanese outfits.

The trio will be looking to end the season on a high and, with a podium under their belts, the aim for the eight hours is to score as many all-important championship points as possible. Currently the Honda squad is sitting 11th in the overall championship standings, just 12 points away from the top-ten.

The 40th Suzuka 8 Hours will start at 11:30 Japanese Standard Time (GMT+9) on Sunday 30 July.

For all the news and real-time updates over the eight hours, follow @HondaRacingCBR

Freddy  Foray

Freddy Foray 111

We are improving step by step and we made huge progress at Slovakia – both with the Fireblade and also the pit stops and how the team works together. So we are coming to Suzuka in a good place and we will all be giving it 100%. Everyone is working so hard to improve our feeling with the CBR, third place was good, but of course as racers you always want the win! Suzuka is a special race and I now can’t wait to get going!

Honda Endurance Racing
Julien Da Costa

Julien Da Costa 111

We had a great time in Slovakia and it was such a good feeling to be back on the podium again! The team made a huge step forward and the pit stops were like lightning! We have nothing to lose, so we will push as we did in Slovakia. The all-new Fireblade is getting better with each race, everyone works hard and we are getting stronger. I can’t wait to get started at Suzuka, it’s always difficult in the heat but it’s endurance and what we do best!

Honda Endurance Racing
Sébastien Gimbert

Sébastien Gimbert 111

After our podium at Slovakia I left very happy! The team did a great job with all pit stops and the hard word is starting to come together. On track myself, Freddy and Julien all fought hard and we were determined to do well. We do still have some things to work on and improve with, but I know that the team do not stop working to provide us the best package. I’m looking forward to Suzuka; it is such a different race with a great atmosphere. As it is the last race of the season I would like to do a good job there to thank the team, Honda and my sponsors.

Honda Endurance Racing
Jonny Twelvetrees

Jonny Twelvetrees

Team Manager

Well we are arriving at Suzuka with a third place under our belts, so spirits are high with the team and also the riders. Everyone has been working so hard to bring everything together and now we are in a good position. Fair play to the crew at Slovakia – the pit stops were spot on throughout the race and it shows that practice does make perfect. The riders as well, we have been working hard with their feedback to improve the feeling and performance of the Fireblade for them. So we go to Suzuka positive and aiming to finish the year on a high!

Honda Endurance Racing
Suzuka 8 Hours

Suzuka Circuit, Japan

FIM EWC 2017, Round 5

Thursday 27 Jul 2017, 01:12 UTC
# Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 MuSASHi RT HARC-PRO Honda 2'07.756
2 YAMAHA FACTORY RACING Yamaha 2'08.020
3 Yoshimura Suzuki Motul Racing Suzuki 2'08.321
4 F.C.C TSR Honda Honda 2'08.342
5 Kawasaki Team Green Kawasaki 2'08.430
6 Honda Suzuka Racing Team Honda 2'08.617
7 BMW Motorrad 39 BMW 2'08.926
8 Moriwaki Motul Racing Honda 2'08.938
9 S-Pulse Dream Racing Suzuki 2'09.312
10 YART Yamaha Yamaha 2'09.383
11 Team KAGAYAMA Suzuki 2'09.571
12 Honda DREAM RT SAKURAI HONDA Honda 2'09.586
13 Honda Dream Racing Honda 2'09.838
14 GMT94 - Yamaha Yamaha 2'09.873
15 MotoMapSUPPLY FutureAccess Suzuki 2'10.750
16 ITO RACING GMD&REDGRIFFIN Yamaha 2'10.935
17 Team SuP Dream Honda Honda 2'11.110
18 au&Teluru Kohara RT Honda 2'11.191
19 EVA RT WEBIKE Trick Star Kawasaki 2'11.374
20 AKENO SPEED - YAMAHA Yamaha 2'11.410
21 Satu HATI Honda Team Asia Honda 2'11.423
22 teamJP, DFR&RS-ITOH Kawasaki 2'11.505
23 Suzuki Endurance Racing Team Suzuki 2'11.992
24 Mistresa with ATJ Racing Honda 2'12.034
25 JAPAN POST Honda Kumamoto Racing Honda 2'12.036
26 TEAM FRONTIER Honda 2'12.275
27 Honda Endurance Racing Honda 2'12.371
Thursday 27 Jul 2017, 01:07 UTC
# Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 YAMAHA FACTORY RACING Yamaha 2'07.540
2 MuSASHi RT HARC-PRO Honda 2'08.181
3 F.C.C TSR Honda Honda 2'08.564
4 Kawasaki Team Green Kawasaki 2'08.920
5 Moriwaki Motul Racing Honda 2'09.151
6 Yoshimura Suzuki Motul Racing Suzuki 2'09.263
7 YART Yamaha Yamaha 2'09.343
8 S-Pulse Dream Racing Suzuki 2'10.343
9 Honda Dream Racing Honda 2'10.468
10 BMW Motorrad 39 BMW 2'10.708
11 au&Teluru Kohara RT Honda 2'10.765
12 Honda DREAM RT SAKURAI HONDA Honda 2'10.798
13 Team KAGAYAMA Suzuki 2'10.931
14 Satu HATI Honda Team Asia Honda 2'10.971
15 GMT94 - Yamaha Yamaha 2'11.415
16 Suzuki Endurance Racing Team Suzuki 2'11.527
17 Team SuP Dream Honda Honda 2'11.563
18 MotoMapSUPPLY FutureAccess Suzuki 2'11.759
19 EVA RT WEBIKE Trick Star Kawasaki 2'11.944
20 ITO RACING GMD&REDGRIFFIN Yamaha 2'12.015
21 Honda Suzuka Racing Team Honda 2'12.096
22 Mistresa with ATJ Racing Honda 2'12.252
23 TEAM FRONTIER Honda 2'12.261
24 BMCJ Motorrad Rennsport BMW 2'12.452
25 Honda Endurance Racing Honda 2'12.942