Team Kawasaki SRC gained the upper hand over its rivals in free practice for the Bol d’Or on Thursday. Gilles Stafler’s team of riders followed up on their good performance in qualifying – notably Randy de Puniet, who set the fastest individual lap: a 1’57.532. Randy was notably the only rider to come under the 1’58 mark in qualifying.
‘I’m feeling confident,’ said de Puniet, ‘and I’ve a lot more Endurance experience now than I did at my first 24-hour race – last year’s Bol d’Or. We’re also much better equipped to go after a win.’
Team manager Gilles Stafler agrees. ‘Our bike is performing much better than at the 24 Heures Motos. We’ve worked hard on the suspension. Right from the August tests on the Paul Ricard circuit, we knew we were all set to do battle. Our lap time is a half-second faster on average than it was last year.’
Fabien Foret too is pleased with the improved ZX-10RR. ‘The bike is more consistent, more efficient and easier to ride, which all translates into enhanced performance.’
The 81st Bol d’Or will start at 3pm on Saturday 16 September.