TOP TEN START FOR HONDA TT LEGENDS AT BOL D’OR

Honda TT Legends top ten start Following two days of qualifying at the Magny Cours circuit in France, the Honda TT Legends will start the 2013 Bol d’Or 24-hour race from ninth on the grid with John McGuinness, Simon Andrews and newcomer Michael Dunlop forming the three-rider line-up.

McGuinness, Andrews, Dunlop and Michael Rutter each completed two 20-minute qualifying sessions, with Dunlop securing the fastest lap for the team. As the fourth rider, his lap does not contribute towards the team’s final qualifying time, therefore the combined fastest laps of McGuinness, Rutter and Andrews see the team start from ninth.

Due to the leg injury he sustained during pre-season testing, it has been decided that Rutter will not compete in the race, leaving Dunlop to take his place in the line-up. The Bol d’Or 24-hour – which is the opening round of the 2013 Endurance World Championship – will start at 15.00 CET tomorrow.

Top ten start for Honda TT Legends at Bol d’Or Neil Tuxworth

We’ve had no machine issues at all during the official free practice and qualifying over the past two days, so it’s gone very well. We pride ourselves on our reliability but we’re trying to increase the performance all the time as well. I do think our bike is working better than last year, the new electronics system has certainly improved things. We’re in a reasonably strong position for the race and the decision has been made to run McGuinness, Andrews and Dunlop in that order. Michael Rutter has obviously got some injuries he’s recovering from and he’s the one most likely to suffer during the race having not done a 24-hour before, so we think this is the best scenario.

John McGuinness

John McGuinness

John McGuinness

We’re all pretty much the same in terms of lap times, there’s not much in it, and that’s where we want to be. It’s fair to say that qualifying is not the be all and end all in endurance, it’s more about reliability and consistency and we know that we can achieve that. As always, we’ll aim to do 24 hours of consistent laps and hopefully we’ll be there at the end.

Simon Andrews

Simon Andrews

Simon Andrews

We’ve all been working together to try a few different things. The chassis has come on really well and I posted the quickest lap time yesterday. We made a few changes for today and everyone went quicker again, although I got caught up on the final sector of my fast lap. There’s a lot of traffic in the first three groups and you really get hammered. Managing the traffic is hard but that’s exactly what we have to do in the race. It messed up an important lap for me but the main thing is we are consistent and our times are bunched together, which is in some ways more important that having one really fast riders and one or two slower ones. Consistency is key and that’s what we’ll be aiming for in the race.

Michael Dunlop

Michael Dunlop

Michael Dunlop

I don’t do a lot of short circuit racing so it’s nice to have been the quickest rider today. I actually feel like I could have gone a bit quicker and I think that will come with a bit more time on the bike. We’re certainly making headway with the set-up. We obviously aim to get to a stage where everybody is happy, we can’t just make me happy or someone else happy, so it’s a compromise but it seems to be working. I’m obviously pleased to have been chosen to race and I’m looking forward to it.

Michael Rutter

Michael Rutter

Michael Rutter

It’s been good over the past couple of days, learning the track, doing the night practice and getting used to the new way of working in the endurance championship. The body’s hanging in after the crash injuries but I fully understand the decision for me not to do the race. I wish the guys all the best of luck and hope they can bring home a good result.

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