Wet conditions failed to dampen the enthusiasm for this exciting 2nd installment of the European classic endurance racing series. After an impressive win at Paul Ricard in round one the pre-race favourites were Team Force piloted by two ex world champion endurance racers in Hubin and Fastre.
The 4 hour race was part of a classic bike festival at Spa with numerous classes competing throughout the day on Saturday and Sunday. The allocated track time for the endurance race was from 8pm on Saturday evening concluding at 12 midnight.
Throughout the day there were numerous heavy showers making for tricky riding conditions. A number of crashes added spilled oil to concern all teams competing in the evening race.
After much preparation the race started with the traditional LE Mans style start. The roar from the crowd would have suggested that Belgium had just won the World Cup.
Without a reliable starter motor Sweatshop Phase One opted to start at the back of the grid with a shove start. Phase One rider Peter Linden had a cracking start working his way through the field of 66 riders to be placed in 10th position after only 6 laps. Hubin from Team Force made a great start also leading the field from start to finish. Bob Collins also made a very quick start for Team Alfs but sadly fell foul of the poor conditions with a crash and subsequently a relatively early retirement.
With Team Force dominating at the front the race developed into a really tight contest for 2nd 3rd and 4th. As the light deteriorated and more heavy rain showers fell it was amazing how consistent lap times were. Ultimately the race was determined by swift rider changes and quick re-fueling. After 4 hours of racing the last few laps had three teams within 5 second of each other with Team Force a full lap ahead. Peter Linden from Phase One pushed really hard in those few remaining minutes pushing past the British based Team Neate but failing to pass Motobel with their consistent Moto Guzzi Lemans 3.
1 Team Force – Hubin/Fastre
2 Motobel – Artigues/Sleurs
3 Phase One – Linden/Brasher/Cormac
Congratulations to all teams and we look forward to round 3 of this 4 race series at the Nurburgring on the 6th - 7th September before the final round at Aragon!