7th round, August 10th, 2002, Speedweek Ochersleben (D) Stéphane Mertens wins the Speedweek Oschersleben by a hair's breadth.
Title defender Stéphane Mertens is the first rider this year to score two victories. After winning in Assen, the BMW Belgium Faignoy Team rider also scored full points in Oschersleben. He crossed the line only 0.011 seconds before Thomas Hinterreiter, himself closely pursued by Markus Barth and Fernando Cristobal.
"This season was tough for me. The zero points affair in Mugello, the wrong tyre choice in Spa where I scored one meagre point on slick tyres in the pouring rain, the shift error at the Sachsenring which cost me 4 places at the end of the race everything could have happened as it did today", said the happy winner on the podium. He can now look ahead to the final run at the Bol d'Or on the 14th of September with a 21 point lead on the runner-up.
For the entire 19 laps Mertens was up with the leading pack and rode a very tactical race. Youngster Richard Cooper (BMW Great Britain Team) was the first off the line. A lightning start took the 18 year-old Spa winner from fourth to first place. However, Thomas Hinterreiter and Markus Barth passed him on the first lap but he kept Fernando Cristobal, Stéphane Mertens, Andy Hofmann, Brian Morrison, Matthieu Lagrive and Sébastien Legrelle behind him. To the numerous fans' great pleasure who were riveted by the spectacular race, there were many BMW Motorrad BoxerCup typical leader changes, sometimes even several times per lap. Thomas Hinterreiter made a slight mistake when he grounded one cylinder a little too hard coming out of the long stretch of
Hotel Curve and was seen in eighth position riding through the start/finish line. Mertens took over the lead but was overtaken instantly by Markus Barth (BMW Group Subsidiaries Racing Team). One lap later Fernando Cristobal had his say. Last year's pole setter from the Spanish Interviu Busquets Team shot past the start and finish line ahead of Mertens, Barth and Hofmann. One lap later an amazing thing happened : the three riders rode through with exactly the same time. On the next round the fans were in for slightly more stability. Barth, Mertens, Cristobal, Hofmann and Hinterreiter were the pace-makers until Andy Hofmann (Senger Racing Team) were in for some disappointment. Follow-up damage of the previous day's training accident forced the Sachsenring winner and runner-up in the provisional standings to withdraw from the race.
Hinterreiter now put the pressure on. Midway through the race he caught up with the leading pack. Cristobal, who rode the fastest lap (1'38''430) made a mistake on lap14 and from then on was only able to admire Hinterreiter's Jama Laser exhaust system from behind. Lurking in third position, the Austrian took over the lead on the penultimate lap ahead of Mertens and Barth. Stéphane Mertens then forced himself past Hinterreiter to cross the finish line a hair's breadth before his opponent.
VIP riders Stiggy Stigefelt, Udo Mark and the man with number 66, Alex Hofmann, rode to respectable 8th, 11th and 12th positions.
"That was a really close thing again", grinned BMW Motorrad Head of Motorsports Berti Hauser. "Only the Bol d'Or will decide who takes home the first prize, a BMW M coupé. "We can't offer our fans and partners a better show than this. That's why the BMW Management have decided to continue the BMW Motorrad BoxerCup in 2003".
Originally-From: alexander <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Provisional standings after 7 from 8 rounds Pos. Nr. Team Rider Points 1 1 BMW Belgium/Faignoy Motor Stiphane Mertens 107 2 7 Team Austria-Hinterreiter Thomas Hinterreiter 86 3 6 BMW Group Niederlassungen Racim Markus Barth 85 4 5 Motorrad Senger Racing Team Andy Hofmann 81 5 21 BMW Belgium/Herpigny Motor Sibastien Legrelle 75 47 BMW Motorrad Great Britain Richard Cooper 75 7 16 Interviz/Busquets Fernando Cristsbal 59 8 11 BMW Motorrad Great Britain Brian Morrison 52 9 99 Dream Car Team Roberto Panichi 47 10 79 Solo Moto Ivan Lazzarini 39 11 12 BMW Motorrad Great Britain Gus Scott 35 31 Ducos Moto Philippe Thomas 35 13 35 Das Boxer Team Norbert Rebholz 27 14 59 BRH Motos Frangois Ciciliani 25 15 17 Interviz/Busquets Javier Rodriguez 24 85 Team Le Brasseur Matthieu Lagrive 24 17 48 BMW Belgium/A.M. Superbike Grigory Fastri 17 18 22 Bernhardt + Rvhrich Klaus Nies 16 19 9 Motociclismo Antonio Calasso 15 20 45 BMW Belgium/Bavarian Motorsport Dirk Buylinckx 13 91 Sport Garage Stiphane Coutelle 13 22 36 Interviz/Busquets Alex Busquets 11 8 Interviz/Busquets Josep Maria Busquets 11 24 37 BMW Belgium/Lievens Mechanics Steven Casaer 7 25 4 SPC Tony MacBride 5 10 BMW Sweden Tobias Nystrvm 5 27 13 Hakvoort-Klipfel Racing Herbert Mandelartz 2 28 3 Gilex Racing Lex van Dijk 1 27 Interviz/Busquets Agustm Busquets 1 30 14 Nico Bakker Jeroen Oudeman 0 20 Hobi-Moto Jakob Hobi 0 33 Moto Technic Franck Renault 0 13 Hakvoort-Klipfel Racing Michael Galinski 0