Hoping for clearer Tuscan skies Two weeks after a dismally wet French Grand Prix round, the BMW Motorrad BoxerCup heads for the Italian Grand Prix, hoping for the weather to clear in the beautiful Tuscan scenery of Mugello. The last two rounds...
Hoping for clearer Tuscan skies
Two weeks after a dismally wet French Grand Prix round, the BMW Motorrad BoxerCup heads for the Italian Grand Prix, hoping for the weather to clear in the beautiful Tuscan scenery of Mugello. The last two rounds in Oulton Park and Le Mans have been held in tricky wet conditions and riders are now looking forward to fit their R 1100 S machines with dry Metzeler tyres. Series leader Roberto Panichi, who won the event in Mugello last year, looks set to repeat his performance in front of his home crowd. But the ever consistent Swiss Andy Hofmann only trails Panichi by five points and is determined to challenge the Italian Dream Car Team rider.
With two wins out of three races, the Italian delegation in the BMW Motorrad BoxerCup 2003 has so far been extremely successful. For a few tenths of a second, Panichi defeated American BoxerCup rookie Brian Parriot in the exotic Daytona 200 Mile opening round, only to fall short of Great Britain's Richard Cooper on a drying then wet Oulton Park racetrack.
In Le Mans a fortnight ago the ex-Superbike rider was amongst ten BoxerCup fallers in the pouring rain, but managed to remount his machine to finish eleventh, scoring five very useful championship points which still allow him to lead the provisional standings.
But it was another Dream Car Team rider, Alessandro Tomassoni, who succeeded in avoiding the traps of an extremely slippery Bugatti racetrack, scoring a fine win ahead of Belgium's rain specialist Dirk Buylincks and old-timer Andy Hofmann at 46, he is the BoxerCup's senior member.
A mixture of slow and fast turns with sweeping curves, long straights and off- camber corners make Mugello one of the most challenging circuits for the riders. Set within a beautiful tree lined Tuscan valley, Mugello also offers ample viewing areas for the lively Italian crowd, who will definitely cheer their national BMW Motorrad BoxerCup representatives in the fourteen-lap race, scheduled to take place on the eve of the Italian motorcycle Grand Prix.