BMW Motorrad WorldSBK boss Shaun Muir says his team is focusing on extracting better life from its race tyres after slipping down the order from a pole position start during the Phillip Island opener.

The factory team began its second season with the latest generation BMW S1000RR looking to build on the promising results of 2019 which yielded one pole position and four podiums in the hands of new signing Tom Sykes.

However, while Sykes consolidated his reputation as arguably the most adept single lap qualifier in the series with a run to pole position in Australia, the strong efforts exposed the shortcomings in the BMW’s race package as he slipped down the order in both race one and the Superpole race.

It’s an issue that has plagued BMW since it returned in a factory capacity last year, though Sykes – now a 50-time pole winner - himself has been known to struggle to get race tyres to last competitively over a race distance.

As such, Muir has charged Sykes with improving the BMW in this area, while the incoming Eugene Laverty has placed his focus on improving the electronics.

“Eugene was very clear from the very first time he stepped on the bike about what we needed to work on in the electronics area for him to find something he’s comfortable with. We’d make steps every time he was on the bike, in every session, in every test.

“On the other hand, Tom was focusing on race strategy, on long-distance strategy, which we were struggling to get full race distance out of the tyres.

“That’s one area the engineers have been working on. As a pairing, Tom and Eugene are working very well together. There’s a lot of sharing of data and information although their riding styles are different. One aspect that really pleases us are the benefits that Eugene has found with the electronics setup has benefitted Tom in some areas. There’s been a nice cross-transfer of information which is a positive for the team.”

Meanwhile, Muir has revealed there are discussions taking place about expanding BMW’s presence on the WorldSBK grid to include a satellite outfit.

"There are negotiations currently underway with BMW Motorrad in Munich about potential customer teams. Of course, we welcome another BMW satellite teams on the grid to assist us in development for sure. But at the moment I only know discussions are underway."

 

Comments

Loading Comments...