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EXCLUSIVE Peter Mueller (BMW) - Q&A

16 July 2008

Crash.net
With many people expecting you to announce Troy Corser as your new rider for 2009, can you explain how the deal with Ruben Xaus came about and why was he on top of your shortlist?

PM
Ruben is an established and combative rider with great passion and enthusiasm for racing. He has been a World SBK regular since 1998 and has taken 35 podiums, including 11 victories. With his great experience Ruben will contribute enormously to BMW Motorrad Motorsport. Being a Spaniard, he also represents one very important superbike market.

Crash.net
As for the second seat, is Troy your number one choice? Are you in talks with any other riders? If so, can you reveal who?

PM
Currently we have contact to several riders but I can't provide any further information at this stage.

Crash.net
Did you try and court Max Neukirchner before he re-signed for Suzuki? If so, were you disappointed with his decision to stay where he is?

PM
Max performs absolutely marvellous and we are very happy for him. He certainly is the shooting star of this season. Of course we would like to see him with our team in the future.
For 2009 he has signed with Suzuki though. We wish him all the best.

Crash.net
What motivated the decision to compete in the World Superbike Championship, rather than MotoGP? Is it possible a World Superbike campaign may be a prelude to a graduation in the future?

PM
We deliberately took this decision for a very comprehensible reason: The Superbike World Championship represents a racing series with a direct relation to the products in the showroom. Our future customers all over the world will watch “their” motorcycle competing. We are concentrating on this huge challenge now. MotoGP is no current issue.

Crash.net
What marks the new S 1000 out from your rivals' machines?

PM
In the early project phase we checked out various engine concepts. And as you know, we then decided in favour of a four-cylinder, with the straight-four offering the best qualities to meet the power, performance, weight, and package requirements to be fulfilled. In typical BMW style, the engine will of course offer a number of special features, especially on the cylinder head.

Crash.net
What are the bike's vital statistics in terms of power output?

PM
All I can say at the moment is that we are on a very good way and we aim to be absolutely competitive. I don't want to talk about figures in detail.

Crash.net
How has the bike performed in testing so far?

PM
We are doing a lot of testing and are very satisfied with the progress we are making.

Crash.net
Who has been testing the bike?

PM
Steve Martin, Kevin Curtain and Jeremy McWilliams joined our last test. Their experience and feedback is very important to us and gave the whole team just another big boost.

Crash.net
What are the objectives for your first season of competition?

PM
We have to be realistic about our chances in the first season. Although the package of the bike is good and we have an excellent rider with Ruben we have to be patient and learn a lot. We will try to establish ourselves in the top 10 within the first season. We will also try to consistently close the gap to the top teams. In year 2 we plan to catch up with the top teams and to win our first podiums. In the end we of course want to win the championship.


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