BK Maco Racing Team took part in the third round of the World Endurance Championship over the weekend of 3rd – 4th July at the Albacete Circuit in Spain. After the excellent performance in the last round at Oschesleben, Germany, hopes were high within the team.
American Jason Pridmore returned to the team after missing the last round due to injuries sustained at Le Mans. He partnered the Spanish pairing of Danni Ribalta and Victor Carrasco once again. The meeting was concentrated this year into just two days with practice and qualification on Friday, and the 8 hour race starting at 6.00 pm on Saturday. From the beginning riders, team members bikes and tyres suffered from the extreme heat, with temperatures in the mid thirties and the track temperature peaking at 50 degrees plus ! Qualification went very well for the team, less than 1 second covering the three riders qualification times. With such consistency the team qualified third on the grid. Dani Ribalta started the race for the BK Maco Racing Team and stayed in close contention with the leaders for the first hour. After three hours the team were holding second place, but during his second rota Dani Ribalta suffered from a tyre problem and dropped back to third spot despite a brilliant effort to remain on the pace. After seven hours of exciting racing Yamaha Austria led the race from Spanish Yamaha Team Folch Endurance by just 40 seconds. BK Maco Racing were only 13 seconds behind Folch and Carasco was confident of chasing down Folchs David Checa as he started his final rota. However, with just 40 minutes left in the race the rear sprocket failed on the BK Maco Yamaha, leaving Carasco to push the stricken bike back to the pit box. A quick repair saw the team rejoin the race in 7th place, where they stayed until the 8 hours was completed. The team were justifiably disappointed with 7th place after racing in the top three for so long but the performance had many positives, and the 11 championship points raised the team into 10th place overall at the half way point of the season.
Denisa Greskova, Team Manager:
From the beginning it was a fantastic weekend. We were good in training and very good in Qualification The extreme temperature made things very difficult for everyone. The race developed very positively for us. Unfortunately, just when we dared to believe that a podium finish was possible the rear sprocket failed, and dropped us to 7th place. We raced with the leaders for the entire race and matched both Yart and Folch with fantastic pit stops. However, even now we feel sadness for the lost podium finish. The team is now very strong and we believe that we can produce great results in our remaining races. The next race for BK Maco Racing is in Japan on July 26th, the famous Suzuka 8 Hour.