Team Classic Suzuki launched its 2019 European Classic Endurance campaign last weekend, overcoming a series of challenges to finish 10th overall and third in class at the four-hour of Paul Ricard.
Pete Boast and Richard Steadman were without third team member Guy Martin after air traffic control strikes in France delayed Martin’s departure, but put in the extra effort to cover all stints and come away with a podium finish in the superbike class despite a number of lengthy pit stops.
Team Classic Suzuki - again supported by Suzuki’s Vintage Parts Programme and B&B Motorcycles - qualified in 13th, but soon advanced through the field to sit sixth as they approached the halfway stage. Pitting at the midpoint the team had dropped to eighth, and spent time in the pit lane to secure a loose panel. Another long pit stop followed to secure a loose wire, relegating the team to ninth.
The problems weren’t over, as failing lights that were flickering for the last 15 minutes steadied the pace, but Boast continued grinding out the laps to take the chequered flag in 10th overall, securing the final spot on the podium in the superbike class.
Team Classic Suzuki’s Tim Davies said, "We’ve had some tough races as a team, but this was up there as one of the hardest. Both Pete [Boast] and Richard [Steadman] put in a brilliant effort out on the track, overcoming their fair share of problems and challenges to keep going, keep chalking up the laps, and get the Katana to the finish.
"The guys in the pits did a fantastic job as well. We’ve made some changes to the bike this year and this was the first proper run-out. Even when we had to make some running repairs in the pits, they work quickly to find the problem and solve it and get the bike back out. So a big thank you to everyone involved. We’re already looking forward to the next one."