Hinterreiter Bags Sixth Podium From Six Races Drama and action was the amazing crescendo to the sixth BMW Motorrad BoxerCup Race of 2004 today when Belgian Sebastien Legrelle hit the front with just yards to go in front of the biggest Donington...
Hinterreiter Bags Sixth Podium From Six Races
Drama and action was the amazing crescendo to the sixth BMW Motorrad BoxerCup Race of 2004 today when Belgian Sebastien Legrelle hit the front with just yards to go in front of the biggest Donington Park crowd ever as the BMWs started off a packed race card for British Grand Prix day. With a drying track and the threat of rain, race long leaders Roberto Panichi and Stephane Mertens had a 6 second lead in front of 82,000 spectators into the last few corners, but with Panichi leading into Goddards, Mertens barged his way up on the inside of the Italian's R 1100 S to touch once, and then twice as they leaned on each other for just too long resulting in Mertens crashing to the tarmac. Panichi had to take to the grass and predictably fell off after heavy overnight rain had left the greener parts of the circuit a near quagmire. The pair remounted and crossed the line but were excluded as once a bike has crashed it is not allowed to rejoin. Down is out.
For Legrelle it was his first victory of the year showing once more that the BMW Motorrad BoxerCup 2004 has thrown up another victor. "I tried to go with the other two, but in the end I could not stay with their pace, but after their accident I'm not going to say no to a win!" Said the Belgian who last won in the wet of Assen last year.
In what was a `tyre choice' gambling race for some, Spain's Jose L. Nion took his first steps onto a BMW podium with second place, while title leader Thomas Hinterreiter took third to leave him with six podiums from six races and a 35 point lead in the title chase with just two more races to go. "I was obviously a bit lucky to get this podium but the others fell off so I am now very happy to go to Brno with a very healthy margin of 35 points."
Newcomer to the Team Reseau France squad was Nicolas Dussauge who is going home with a brilliant 4th ahead of American Brian Parriott who is now second in the points table, but not quite as happy as British rider Calvin Hogan who with 6th spot has bagged the best overall finish of any of the YoungStar under 21 riders in amongst the `big boys' this season.
So, Austrian rider Hinterreiter could wrap up the title on August 21st at Brno and even drive back home in a brand new BMW M3 Coupe such is his dominance with one more race remaining after that in Valencia at the end of October. Brian Parriott crossed the line first at Brno last year, only later have been penalised 10 seconds for a slight jump start. The American started this season without being sure of the budget for the whole eight races, but his win at Daytona secured some extra funds and that has left him in with a solid top two possibility.