NO SUZUKA FOR BMP-ELF-99 RACING TEAM
The privateer BMP-ELF-99 Racing Team will not travel to Suzuka for this year's eight-hour race, having been unable to raise the additional sponsorship necessary to attend Japanese event.
The BMP-ELF-99 Racing Team weren't originally scheduled to race at the world famous eight-hour. However, after showing strongly in the two Endurance World Championship races so far, at Le Mans and Albacete, competing at Suzuka would have given the team the chance to further improve their position in the championship standings.
The BMP-ELF-99 Racing Team's sponsors and partners, particularly Elf and Dunlop, were extremely supportive of the team's plan to race at Suzuka, with both working closely with Team Principal, Michael Bartholemy, to secure the additional sponsorship required to compete in Japan.
But with timescales short, and the race fast approaching, Bartholemy was unable to find the funding necessary for the team to race competitively with their distinctive red, white and blue Honda CBR1000 at Suzuka.
"It's a big disappointment, as I honestly believe we could have made a real bid for the championship title off the back of a good result in Suzuka," explained Bartholemy. "But, at the end of the day, we knew exactly what budget we needed to find to be competitive there and we didn't quite manage to reach this figure. With what we did raise we could have gone to Japan, but we wouldn't have had what we needed to be competitive and we're not here just to make up the numbers."
"Not racing at Suzuka obviously doesn't help with our bid to win the championship in our first year, but this will remain our aim this season. We've faced a steep learning curve in our debut season, but the team has adapted to this new challenge with alacrity and, I'm happy to say, I think we are now on the same level as some of the more experienced teams in the EWC paddock. Now we must focus on the Bol d'Or and the Qatar eight-hour race, two races at which I'm confident of strong results for the team."
The BMP-ELF-99 Racing Team currently lie eighth in the Endurance World Championship standings, just 16 points behind the current series leaders, Bolliger Team Switzerland. The BMP-ELF-99 equipe will contest the final two rounds of this year's Endurance World Championship - the Bol d'Or at Magny-Cours on the weekend of 11/12 September and the 8-Hours of Doha at Losail in Qatar on 13 November.