BMW Previews Monza World Superbike
The first block of European races in the 2010 FIM Superbike World Championship comes to an end this coming weekend (7th – 9th May) at the high-speed motorcycle racing Monza circuit in Italy. Immediately after the race, the teams will set off for Kyalami (RSA) and Salt Lake City (USA) before returning to European soil.
Team BMW Motorrad Motorsport will travel to World SBK Monza on the back of two top-five results and another finish in the top ten at Assen (NED), and the team will be aiming to build on its strong recent performances at the circuit in Monza’s Royal Park.
Engine power is an important factor on this classic road race track, the highest-speed circuit on the calendar. Monza also places exceptionally heavy loads on the brakes. The team prepared for the upcoming race weekend with a two-day test on Wednesday and Thursday in Misano (ITA). Troy tested out several variants of the Nissin brakes and worked on the bike’s Monza-spec engine set-up.
Troy Corser says: "At Monza two things are key: good acceleration and good brakes. The circuit is, in effect, a succession of long straights and tight corners. At Assen we were really quick on the straights. If we can build speed quickly out of the corners and look after our tyres over the full race distance, I’m very confident we can have a good race weekend."
Ruben Xaus says: "I have good memories of Monza last year, as I finished in the top ten twice. I like the atmosphere in the Royal Park. You can feel the long tradition of motor sport wherever you go around the circuit.
Monza is a real stop-and-go type of track. The first chicane has been modified slightly since last year’s races. I don’t know how it looks now in detail, but it will be important, for sure, to accelerate cleanly out of the left-hander and take as much speed as possible up the slight incline. The next chicane – the Variante della Roggia – follows not long after.
In the Lesmo combination you need to follow a clean line. This section is littered with leaves from the trees that surround the circuit. Here again it is important to carry a lot of speed out of the second corner as you head towards the three-corner Ascari chicane.
The track is a bit bumpy approaching Ascari, so bike set-up comes into play here. This section is followed by another long straight, and again a clean exit from the corner and engine power are vital, before you finish the lap with the long Parabolica corner."
Berthold Hauser (BMW Superbike Director) says: "Monza is the final race in the first block of European races this season. We’ve collected 26 more World Championship points this year than at the equivalent stage of last season. So far in 2010 we’ve recorded three top-five placings and another six top-ten finishes, and in the second race at Assen we were only two tenths off a podium place. All in all, we’re on the right track.
We’ve been able to improve from race weekend to race weekend over the season so far and, of course, we’re looking to continue this trend at Monza. Things aren’t looking too bad ahead of the Italian race. We learnt a lot from our test in Misano and the characteristics of the Monza track suit the BMW S 1000 RR."
The city of Monza has a population of 120,000 and lies in the Lombardy region of northern Italy. Monza’s Royal Park, where the race circuit is located, borders on the neo-classical Villa Reale palace and covers an area of 668 hectares. This makes the Parco di Monza approximately twice the size of the world famous Central Park in New York. As well as the circuit, the Royal Park is also home to the Golf Club Milano.
The Monza circuit has two particularly defining features: extremely high top speeds and tradition. Motorcycle and car races have been held at the track – set within the high walls of the Royal Park – since it was opened in 1922, and no other venue has hosted more Formula One grands prix.
The Autodromo Nazionale di Monza has undergone frequent modifications over the course of its long history, but the remains of a banked curve still bear witness to its early days. The original layout included an oval section, but this has not been used for racing since 1967.
At the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza everything is focused on maximising speed. However, the brakes of the BMW S 1000 RR will also be subjected to a genuine test of quality, and the bike also has to display good low-speed steering responses.
Achieving a high level of braking stability makes life easier for the riders, while good acceleration through the gears is vital, especially after the ultra-slow first chicane. The braking point for the two famous Lesmo corners is also important. In the Parabolica the riders spend a lot of time on the tyre edge, and good edge grip is therefore required to get a good run onto the long straight.
Facts and Figures
Autodromo Nazionale di Monza / 9th May
12.00 hrs / 12.00 hrs
15.30 hrs / 15.30 hrs
5.777 km/103.986 km (18 laps)
Ben Spies, Yamaha WSB, 1:45.344 min.
Top speed: 325.8
Longest section at full
Date of birth
Place of birth
Sant Cugat del Valles, Spain
1992, Phillip Island
Fastest race laps
Best World Championship placing
1st (1996 and 2005)
World Championship points 2010
Team BMW Motorrad Motorsport
Munich and Stephanskirchen (DE)
2009, Phillip Island (AUS)
World Championship points 2010
6th (2009), 141 points