2019 – Bol d’Or: Qualifying sees mixed conditions and Mikhalchik going quickest

2019 – Bol d’Or: Qualifying sees mixed conditions and Mikhalchik going quickest

The Qualifying sessions of the 83rdedition of the Bol d’Or have been splitted into two parts, as rain came in over the Paul Ricard Circuit. 

Ilya Mikhalchik – BMW Motorrad World Endurance Team. Photo: © highsidepr.com

The Session Blue for rider one was held in sunny and hot conditions, but thunderstorms could be heard from the mountains already. It was BMW Motorrad World Endurance Team rider and double IDM Superbike Champion Ilya Mikhalchik from Ukraine, who set the pace. With his time of 1:53.669 he was just slightly behind the best time of YART-rider Marvin Fritz from this mornings Free Practice session. Mikhalchik topped the Blue group by 0.057 Seconds over YART rider Loris Baz. 

World Champion Jeremy Guarnoni took the #1 SRC Kawasaki to this, just in front of F.C.C. TSR Honda France man Josh Hook. It was BMW-Yamaha-Kawasaki-Honda in the Top four. 

Amazing: Mikhalchik was clocked with a top speed of 340.6 kmh on the Mistral straight. 

Roman Stamm – Team Bolliger Kawasaki Switzerland. Photo: © highsidepr.com

The session had to be red flagged with less than two minutes to go after James Westmoreland and Roman Stamm collided. 

The Rider Yellow session got divided into two again, after the marshalls had to take care of an oil spill after just a hand full laps for the most riders. It was German YART rider Marvin Fritz, who finally got the top spot in 1:53.797, just 0.046 faster than Freddy Foray on the FCC Honda. 

When the session got re-started after the cleaning process, the rain finally came in on the Paul Ricard Circuit and just a couple of riders gave it a go on rain tires. 

Pepijn Bijsterbosch – GERT56 by GS Yuasa. Photo: © highsidepr.com

Rider Red Qualifying 1 was held in wet conditions all the way through and in the end it was veteran and experienced David Checa on the SRC Kawasaki who topped the session in 2:15.924 with almost a full second over Kevin Manfredi on the best Superstock bike in second position. 

Half of the field of Rider Red did not make the Qualification time of 2:26.798 – 108 percent of Checa’s effort – and will have to give it a hard go again tomorrow. 

There is no combined Qualifying result as for now pretty much depends on tomorrows on goings in the second session. 

Toni Börner