Le Mans Electric Motorcycle Race Won By Ho Chi Fung
Chi Fung didn’t have the greatest start and lost his position to West at the first corner, but it wasn’t long before his AC-motored machine put him back in front.
The real competition was for second place, as Lo Turco and West battled it out throughout the duration of the eight-lap contest.
“Ho Chi Fung walked away with the race. He has a very fast bike, but I had a lot of fun,” West said.
“Rhalf was pushing me all the way. I lost track of how many times we passed each other in one lap; it was back and forth. He would take me at one corner; I’d have him at the next and then he’d be back in front. It was great fun,” West added.
Chi Fung’s team mate Su Rong Zai, who was leading the European Championship going into the race, failed to finish after low-siding early on in the contest. That means Chi Fung is now at the top of the European table.
“It was a really good race,” Chi Fung said, “but when I came off in Valencia, it allowed Su to take the lead in the championship. Now everything has evened out after he came off today, but it’s not just about winning. It’s about developing a fast and efficient bike.”
Despite Rong Zai’s failure to finish, Zongshen still had two bikes in the winners’ paddock after Lo Turco swapped teams after damaging his bike during Thursday’s practice.
In order to ensure he was able to put in a competitive time during Q1, Lo Turco accepted an offer from Zongshen to race on one of their spare bikes. It was a decision which paid dividends.
“I am a racer and I want to get on the podium,” Lo Torco said, “That’s what it is all about. It was one of the best races I have done this year; myself and Sam had a great dice. It was like going back to our roots again in club racing, and on an electric bike! We tried to preserve the power of the bike during the first few laps, but as the race went on, I thought that if I kept inside Sam’s slipstream I would use less energy and try and take him later in the race. So we passed each other a few times but Sam took second in the end. It was a fantastic race though; I had a lot of fun and can’t wait to get out there again.”
At the back, Chris Foster put in a valiant performance on his Renegade Z bike, which was slower than the rest of the competition, to produce a fourth-place finish in front of Le Mans veteran Philippe Monneret.