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Perfect Saturday at Barcelona: Pole position and first win for Toprak Razgatlioglu and the ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team.

Winning at Barcelona (ESP) was Toprak Razgatlioglu’s (TUR) declared goal for this second race weekend of the 2024 FIM Superbike World Championship (WorldSBK). He achieved it in the first main race. With his first pole position and his first win aboard the BMW M 1000 RR, Razgatlioglu secured a perfect Saturday for himself, BMW Motorrad Motorsport and the ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team.

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Dominic Thoennes
BMW Group

Barcelona. Winning at Barcelona (ESP) was Toprak Razgatlioglu’s (TUR) declared goal for this second race weekend of the 2024 FIM Superbike World Championship (WorldSBK). He achieved it in the first main race. With his first pole position and his first win aboard the BMW M 1000 RR, Razgatlioglu secured a perfect Saturday for himself, BMW Motorrad Motorsport and the ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team. On only his second race weekend as a BMW Motorrad factory rider, he stood on the top step of the podium for the first time. It was also the first win in a main race for the ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team. Previously, Michael van der Mark (NED) secured a win in a Superpole Race.

 

In the Superpole qualifying on Saturday morning, Razgatlioglu had already made the team jubilant. Setting a new all-time track record, he placed his BMW M 1000 RR on pole position. In the race, he initially held onto the lead, but then slipped back to third place temporarily in the tight battle for the front positions. However, the Turkish rider kept his cool. First, he reclaimed second position and then set out to catch up to Nicolò Bulega (ITA / Ducati), who led with a several-second gap. In an extremely exciting finish, Razgatlioglu eventually took the lead again on the final lap and defended the win to the finish line. Among the first to congratulate him was Markus Flasch, Head of BMW Motorrad, who witnessed this successful race Saturday at Barcelona on-site.

 

Team-mate Michael van der Mark (NED) also secured a very good starting position with fourth place in the Superpole. He was also in the mix for podium finishes for a long time but then lost positions and finished ninth.

 

It was a challenging Saturday for the Bonovo action BMW Racing Team. Garrett Gerloff (USA) finished the first race in twelfth place. Team-mate Scott Redding (GBR) crossed the finish line in 17th position.

 

Reactions after race one at Barcelona.

 

Markus Flasch, Head of BMW Motorrad: “Congratulations to everyone on this fantastic win! It was great to cheer with the team in the pit box. Toprak has shown that he is a very special rider and person. We knew he had a bike capable of winning with the BMW M 1000 RR, and it’s fantastic that we could prove it already on the second race weekend. Thanks to everyone for the hard work, to Toprak, to our BMW Motorrad Motorsport crew, and to the ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team. Let‘s keep it up!"

 

Marc Bongers, BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director: “An unbelievable day! We knew we were strong but we also knew that it would be extremely difficult against the Ducatis. I said this morning that we are going to have two people on the first two rows of the starting grid. That came true. Then I was confident that we could fight for the podium. I also would have been very pleased with second position, but the way Toprak pushed on the last laps was just unbelievable. Thanks to this guy, thanks to the team for a magnificent package. We deserved it but I did not think that it would come so early. So I am extremely pleased. Now we focus on tomorrow, there are two more races to go – and then we party!”

 

Toprak Razgatlioglu, ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team (SP: 1 / R01: 1 ): “I am really happy. Thanks to my team, they did an unbelievable job with really hard work and finally we are winning. This victory has special importance for me as I never won here on this circuit before. It has been my dream and finally I have a victory in Catalunya. This is an unbelievable moment because this race was really hard. If we win here, I think fighting will be easier on other race tracks. After Bulega passed me, I just followed him but after two laps I said, okay, I am pushing a little bit too hard for the rear tyre. The podium is enough for me because I know that on this track, the rear tyres have a big drop on the last five laps. Then on the last five, six laps I saw that Bulega started to drop and I pushed hard, especially on the brakes. At the first round of the season I felt a lot of pressure as I was my first weekend with BMW but here that was not the case anymore but as Markus Flasch is here, we wanted to achieve something for him. To get pole position and win the race made it an unbelievable day. We have two more races tomorrow and now we will focus on those.”

 

Michael van der Mark, ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team (SP: 4 / R01: 9): “My day was honestly not too bad. I had a really good feeling this morning in Superpole and I worked really well together with Toprak. So we had P1 and P4 on the grid which was really good. I also felt really strong with the bike. In the race, I had an okay start. On the first few laps, I did not get the right feeling but then I found a good rhythm and a good pace. I was in P4 for a long time but unfortunately at the end I struggled too much with the tyre wear. I might have pushed a bit too hard in the beginning. We have to analyse it. But I think that the results shows that we are coming and Toprak winning on the BMW M 1000 RR is just amazing so I am really happy with the overall day for the whole team.”

 

Garrett Gerloff, Bonovo action BMW Racing Team (SP: 14 / R01: 12): “It has not been my most memorable day here in Catalunya. Qualifying could have been better and the race could have been better. I don’t feel too bad but everybody is going really fast and it is just hard to stand out and move forward for me at the moment, I guess. But congratulations to Toprak on the win. It’s crazy impressive and we will try some stuff for tomorrow and see if we can improve.”

 

Scott Redding, Bonovo action BMW Racing Team (SP: 12 / R01: 17): “Qualifying was not too bad. We managed to salvage some of the struggles of this weekend to qualify 12th and moved up to 11th due to someone having a penalty. That was okay but I knew that in the race I would still struggle a little bit because the pace for the weekend has not been where we want. Then in the race we made a change on the bike which didn’t work in a positive way, making the braking area more difficult for me to brake late so it was hard to overtake. Then with about seven laps to go, my rear tyre dropped massively. That was basically the race for me. I was trying to manage it as best as I could. We hope that we can find something for tomorrow because we had the pace to be in the small group in front of me. We just need to find a little bit for tomorrow.”

 

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