FIM Endurance | 24 Hours of Le Mans Preview

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2012 FIM Endurance World Championship

The fifth and final round of the 2012 FIM Endurance World Championship will occur this weekend with the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

This is the first time the classic French race will close the series, the “24 Heures du Mans” usually a season opener. And the race will

For both the FIM Endurance World Championship and the FIM World Cup, the struggle for the top spot will go down to the wire at Le Mans’ Bugatti circuit on Saturday, Sept. 8, and Sunday, Sept. 9.

Holder of 11 world titles already, the Suzuki Endurance Racing Team is top of the leader board going into Le Mans, but its 19-point lead over the BMW Motorrad France Team Thevent and the Honda TT Legends is all too narrow in view of the 40 points that will go to the winner of this 24-hour race.

Yamaha France GMT 94 Michelin Yamalube too is now only 21 points behind the leader after two great races in Japan and Germany, so one of these four teams will be taking home the 2012 FIM Endurance World Championship title in Le Mans.

But there will be other official teams in contention to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Winner of the last two editions of Le Mans and of the Bol d’Or at the start of this season, SRC Kawasaki (only entered for the French events) is the pre-race favorite.

During tests this week at the Bugatti circuit, the SRC Kawasaki ridden by Julien da Costa again clocked up the fastest time. We can also expect a last-minute push by Monster Energy Yamaha YART, relegated to 7th in the world rankings after a season dogged by crashes and mechanical problems.

While the five leading motorcycle manufacturers battle it out for victory, the competition among the major tyre manufacturers is no less intense: Dunlop with the Suzuki Endurance Racing Team, Michelin with the BMW Motorrad France Team Thevent, Yamaha France GMT 94 Michelin Yamalube and Monster Energy Yamaha YART, and Pirelli with the SRC Kawasaki. And behind the protagonists, the rivalry among the other crews in the top 10 such as the Bolliger Team Switzerland (Kawasaki), Yamalube Folch Endurance (Yamaha) and Team R2CL (Suzuki) will also make for some exciting action on the track.

And the denouement of the FIM Superstock World Cup promises to be no less exciting. 2011 winner Team Motors Events AMT Assurances (Suzuki) is just four points ahead of the 3D Endurance Moto Center (Kawasaki) and Penz13 Kraftwerk Herpigny Racing (BMW) and seven points ahead of DG Sport Herock (Yamaha). In Superstock, Junior Team LMS Suzuki, which only takes part in the races in France, is a contender to carry the day.