2011 Le Mans 24 hours EWC
At last weekend’s 24 Hours of Le Mans, Round 4 in the 2011 FIM Endurance World Championship, the Honda TT Legends team became the first in history to use Combined ABS at a World Championship level.
The team of 17-time Isle of Man TT winner John McGuinness, Cameron Donald and Keith Amor used the Combined ABS system on the CBR 1000 RR Fireblade, which took fifth out of 62 teams at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
This was the first time for the Combined ABS in a World Championship race, but the Honda TT Legends team has been testing the system throughout the 2011 Endurance World Championship season. The riders reported the system ran smoothly.
Honda pioneered the introduction of ABS on road-going motorcycles and the manufacturer has already experienced racing success at national level when a Combined ABS-equipped Fireblade ridden by Karl Muggeridge won the 2010 German Superbike Championship. The Honda TT Legends team will now continue to run Combined ABS for the remainder of the 2011 season – which concludes in Qatar- and into 2012, the Honda TT Legends team reports.
Neil Tuxworth (Honda TT Legends team manager) says: “Our plan was always to develop ABS during the 2011 season and we’ve done a lot of work at various tests. We were very confident that we were ready to go out and race it so we took the risk to use it at Le Mans. Honda has a long history of proving its technology in the ultimate competitive environment and what could be more testing that the Le Mans 24-hour race.
“We are over the moon with the performance and we had no problems with it whatsoever. The riders were very happy and while we’ll obviously keep developing the system, for this first time being used in World-level racing everything has certainly gone very well.”
John McGuinness (Honda TT Legends CBR1000 RR) says: “We had no problems with the Combined ABS system at all. It’s still in the early stages and there are lots of sophisticated parts on the bike, but the brakes were fantastic for the whole of the 24-hours. There are certainly no complaints from me. To get fifth place on the first outing for the system is mega and hopefully we’ll get on the podium with it at some stage.”
Cameron Donald (Honda TT Legends CBR1000 RR) says: “Having Combined ABS on the bike was definitely a benefit. I’m sure it got me out of trouble more than once, especially late on the race when fatigue was kicking in. The system ran so smoothly throughout the entire race and I can’t wait to see how it will develop. It’s definitely an exciting prospect.”
Keith Amor (Honda TT Legends CBR1000 RR) says: “We didn’t really know what to expect when the team took the decision to run the Combined ABS bike. It’s pretty much brand new, so to come here and for the bike to last and do what it’s done is fantastic. 24 hours is a long time to race around here on any bike and to finish the race and place fifth on the new ABS machine is brilliant.”