Although it was only the second race of the International German Motorcycle Championship (IDM) last weekend it was also the season’s highlight for the Van Zon-Remeha-BMW team. Despite having an international riders allocation with the three German riders Markus Reiterberger, Jan Bühn and Arnaud Friedrich and the Dutchman Danny de Boer, the team has it´s home base in Belgium. And exactly there, a few meters away from the team base, the second event of the IDM took place. On the former Formula 1 circuit of Zolder the riders of the Van Zon-Remeha-BMW team showed an impressive performance. Four podium places, two victories and two second places, by Werner Daemens Superbike riders.

Markus Reiterberger describes Zolder as one of his personal favorite tracks and as his second home race. “I am aware that this is an important event for our team,” explains the IDM leader. “Here we can show the sponsors that their money is invested properly with us. For our whole team, the visit to Zolder is once again an extra motivation and we feel the support we get from the local fans.“ Reiterberger was also not ragged and offered the spectators already in the training an incredible performance. He had the lead in all the training sessions. In the final round, he set a time of 1.31.785 already at the beginning. No one managed to overtake the 1.32 mark and Reiterberger was able to claim the pole position for the two races on Sunday with an advantage of almost four tenths of a second.

In the first race, Reiterberger did not let anything burn down and put a clean start to victory. From the start, he controlled the race from the top, played his whole experience, especially in the initial phase, and rode a 12.890 second lead over the finish line. “At first, I pushed a hundred percent,” he explained. “In the end, I reduced my speed a little. If it has to be, I can also put a scoop on it. Because the racing pace of the other riders is also not to be underestimated. But my tactics went perfectly.” The tactics also went well for the BMW rider in the second race. After the another perfect start, he sat on top of the lead and wasn´t in danger during the whole race. “Even if the gap was perhaps not as big as in the first race,” he says, “my speed in the second race was even better. We didn´t change anything on the bikes setup from race1 to race2 but new tires. It was a pity that the second race was also terminated prematurely by a red flag signal due to an accident. It would have been better to take the victory after the regular race distance, but I´m happy with the result anyway. ”

FW-Fotografie & Design // Foto Felix Wiessmann

Markus Reiterberger |FW-Fotografie & Design // Foto Felix Wiessmann

Danny de Boer had kept fit with his training bike in the IDM summer break and took care of his sub-arms with a physiotherapist. “Every second day there was massage and physiotherapy,” he describes his holidays. “Especially in Zolder you have to be fit, the track is physically demanding and goes right into the arms. The BMW also needs a lot of energy with its immense power.” The dutch riders fokus was clear – to continued his duel with Markus Reiterberger also in Belgium. In the qualifying, the Dutchman put another scoop on it and secured the second grid position behind Markus Reiterberger with a time of 1.32.154.

“Zolder is simply Reiti’s track,” Danny de Boer was absolutely aware on Sunday. De Boer tried in the first race to keep up the pace of the two-time German champion Reiterberger. And even if he was the only one in the whole field, who was able to follow the rider at the top halfway, he had to settle for second place. “His speed was incredible,” de Boer paid tribute to his colleague. “My pace was not bad either, but he was quicker. But I know my favorite tracks are still coming. I finished the race in a controlled manner.” After the second run, Danny de Boer could have given the identical interview. Again, the Dutchman was almost bursting with Reiterberger from the opening row. Reiterberger set a tempo again, so that no one could follow him. De Boer did the best, but he still had to settle for second place in the second superbike race oft he Zolder IDM weekend.

FW-Fotografie & Design // Foto Felix Wiessmann

Danny de Boer | FW-Fotografie & Design // Foto Felix Wiessmann

Jan Bühn was glad to have a few training sessions on his IDM-bike after his performance in the World Endurance Championship just before the Zolder race. “Now I’m on the right operating temperature,” he said after the free practice on Thursday. “I could get used to my IDM BMW and the Pirelli tires again. “During the Zolder test a few weeks ago, Bühn experienced a little gap to his expected performance, but during the race weekend he was quite satisfied with his race pace. With Markus Reiterberger, Bühn of course has a decent caliber beside him in the box. “Having Reiti in the team also helps the other riders” he explains. “Thanks to Markus I see on the data sheets, what is possible on the track and where he sets the time. Clearly, we often have an eye-opening experience when we see where he gets the last seconds. And our motorcycles are technically even. “In the training Bühn was able to implement the new findings accordingly and took the fifth starting position with a time of 1.33.386.

The start into the first race was not going so well, and he found himself after the first round beyond the top ten. “Jan Halbich next to me started a bit early,” he explains the situation. “The start was then unsuccessful and the bike wheeled a lot. Too bad, because the setting of the bike fitted for me and was good for 2nd or 3rd place.” Bühn also had a little bit of bad luck at the end oft he first race, because he had just passed the fourth placed rider when the race was terminated with the red flag. In this case, the previous lap ranking counts an Bühn there was still ranked in fifth position. The second race also did not run quite smoothly for Bühn and the ninth place was not quite as it should have been. Although the start in the afternoon clearly succeeded. “Somehow I did not feel as good as in the morning,” he mused. “I was a little weak on the brake and a little slower from the speed. It was almost the opposite of Race 1, although we had not changed anything on the set up. Now we’ll check the data and see what’s going on.”

FW-Fotografie & Design // Foto Felix Wiessmann

Jan Bühn | FW-Fotografie & Design // Foto Felix Wiessmann

Arnaud Friedrich is the youngest participant in the IDM Superbike at the age of 17 and faces the tough competition in the superbike class properly. “There are only a few places in Zolder where you can catch your breath,” the Saxon explains. “Zolder is not my favorite track, but it is also our home race. It does not bother me that it is often quite turbulent in the box, because of spectators. I can do my own thing here with my mechanics. “After the free practice, Friedrich was not completely happy with the 13th place, and he still had to work on the brakes and his grip level with his team. But he missed his qualifying goal, a result among the top ten, with his time of 1.34,059 and place 11 only a little.

But already in the first race, Arnaud managed to achieve his desired top ten result. “I got off the run from the start and the first laps ran really well. I had a good pace in the second riders group behind the leaders, and we had visual contact with the front group. In the end, I felt in my arms, that Zolder is a very togh track. “In the second race, Friedrich showed an appealing performance and also received a big praise from Teamchef Werner Daemen. But the ambition of the young Saxony was not satisfied with place 13. Especially because he wanted to finish with a top ten result again. “Bastien Mackels was right in front of me,” he says, “and then he had to go straight on the chicane. My race pace was better than in the first race and until the incident with Mackels, I was in the group, who had fought for place 6. But after my fault in the chikane I had no chance to fight for a better position. ”

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Arnaud Friedrich| FW-Fotografie & Design // Foto Felix Wiessmann

The next IDM race will take place in Schleiz (German) at the end of July.

 

Result Qualifying/Grid position

1. 1.31.785 Markus Reiterberger (D/BMW)

2. 1.32,154 Danny de Boer (NL/BMW)

3. 1.32,853 Stefan Kerschbaumer (A/Yamaha)

5. 1.33,386 Jan Bühn (D/BMW)

11. 1.34,059 Arnaud Friedrich (D/BMW)

Result Race 1

1. Markus Reiterberger (D/BMW)

2. Danny de Boer (NL/BMW)

3. Stefan Kerschbaumer (A/Yamaha)

5. Jan Bühn (D/BMW)

10. Arnaud Friedrich (D/BMW)

Result Race 2

1. Markus Reiterberger (D/BMW)

2. Danny de Boer (NL/BMW)

3. Stefan Kerschbaumer (A/Yamaha)

9. Jan Bühn (D/BMW)

13. Arnaud Friedrich (D/BMW)

Score after 4 of 14 races

1. 95 points Markus Reiterberger (D/BMW)

2. 65 points Danny de Boer (NL/BMW)

3. 51 points Stefan Kerschbaumer (A/Yamaha)

4. 49 points Jan Bühn (D/BMW)

13. 15 points Arnaud Friedrich (D/BMW)

 

Riders quotes IDM Zolder 2017