BMW in awe as Toprak Razgatlioglu providing "special times"

Toprak Razgatlioglu has three wins to his name in just three WorldSBK rounds with BMW.

Shuan Muir, Toprak Razgatlioglu, Race2, Dutch WorldSBK, 21 April
Shuan Muir, Toprak Razgatlioglu, Race2, Dutch WorldSBK, 21 April

Nine races into the 2024 WorldSBK season, Toprak Razgatlioglu has BMW fighting for race wins and the championship.

The 2021 world champion has been nothing short of brilliant since his move to BMW, a manufacturer that had been starved of WorldSBK success. 

But that doesn’t seem to be an issue anymore as Razgatlioglu not only took victories in Catalunya and Assen; two circuits BMW previously struggled at, but they were also circuits he had never been victorious at in the past.

Speaking after the most recent round in Assen where Razgatlioglu won Race 2, BMW technical director Christian Gonschor told “Race 2 was the best part of the weekend but anyway, it was a good weekend.”

“Toprak showed a good performance on the SC0 tyre, and he managed to do it perfectly until the end of the race.

“The Superpole Race was a gamble for everybody, as everyone went with the SCQ but nobody had experience with it.

“So it was a hard race for Toprak and for us to watch, but it is very good to see how strong he came back in Race 2 and finished an incredible race.”

“It is special times with special focus for all of our riders and bikes.

“OK, we don’t have all four of our riders at the front right now but the performance from Mikey [Van Der Mark] in Race 2 showed how hard we can fight and work with the bike, which is the most important thing for me as an engineer.

“Toprak managed it from his point of view from the lead and then from sixth to recover by staying calm.

“Mikey was fighting like the good old Mikey and we saw today why he was a race winner in the past, and I am sure he will come back to the podium soon.”

With Razgatlioglu consistently performing, the idea of BMW being title contenders in his first season with the team has turned from a dream into a realistic prospect.

And Gonschor, who admits the season is still long, believes they can challenge Ducati.

“It feels good there is nothing more to say,” began Gonschor. “It shows that the work we do is going in the right direction, and now we have already proved it in the second round.

“Even during winter testing at Jerez and Portimao, we have been competitive at five tracks now.

“For sure, it is a long season, and anything can happen, but we will try and fight.”

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