24 August 2014 Early Oschersleben crash denies Team SRC a podium

Sadly Team Kawasaki SRC did not reap the expected rewards at the prestigious Oschersleben 8 hour race.
Just a few laps after a perfect start, Gregory Leblanc was in contact with a backmarker and crashed unhurt into the gravel of the last corner. Second before this incident, he came back to the Kawasaki SRC garage and passed the damaged number 11 bike to the Kawasaki SRC mechanics.
After a swift fifteen minutes spent rebuilding the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R, Fabien Foret re-joined the race as rider number two but was too far from the leading machines to realistically expect a podium finish. Despite this dramatic gap, the Kawasaki riders didn’t give up and set about a heroic task of achieving a top ten placing.
At the end of the race, Gilles Stafler, the team manager was clearly frustrated but not disappointed overall, commenting:
“For sure it’s not the result we were expecting but that’s endurance racing ! To be honest, I would have preferred to get this problem here rather than at Le Mans.
I want to thank my riders and my team for their efforts. When you are used to winning it’s really difficult to stay motivated to simply score points. But that is the way it goes today and tomorrow will be different.
We have to concentrate our effort now on the Le Mans 24 hour race. This race will be the most important one for us this year. The target is to set a new record with a fifth victory in a row. If we failed here in Oschersleben you can be sure that we will re-double our efforts for Le Mans and get this result for sure !”
Grégory Leblanc said :
“In a way it’s my mistake and we didn’t get the reward we expected. That’s racing and endurance as well. Anyway we will take our revenge in Le Mans.”
Fabien Foret added :
“For sure it’s a bit of a disappointing result. We know that our race pace was good and fast but in endurance it’s not always the fastest team who gets the top spot at the end of the race. Anyway Le Mans will be a very different race – you can count on that!.”
Matthieu Lagrive concluded :
“I have spent three hours an thirteen minutes in a row on the bike. I’m really sore but that’s life. We can have regrets tonight but the positive is that it will make us even stronger for Le Mans.”
With this 10th place team Kawasaki SRC save precious points in the World Endurance championship standings. Before the last round Team Kawasaki SRC is in third position 22 points behind the leader (Yamaha GMT 94) and only one point behind team Bolliger, also riding a Ninja ZX-10R.