24 hours of le Mans bike - MICHELIN and Yamaha Racing GMT 94… Motorcycling’s 2014 endurance world champions!
The final round of the 2014 FIM Endurance World Championship (EWC) at Le Mans lived up every bit to its promise. The drama-filled race saw Michelin secure its 15th motorcycle endurance racing world title thanks to the polished performance of Yamaha Racing GMT 94. The Paris region-based squad came second overall to round off a successful year that has earned it a second world crown, a decade after the first.
The 37th 24 Heures Moto called for nerves of steel after the N°94 Yamaha was hit by another competitor under braking for the very first corner, forcing David CHECA to pit at the end of the opening lap. When the bike re-joined three laps later, it marked the beginning of a thrilling fight back to second spot from 51st position, a comeback that was founded on the team’s confidence in the performance and versatility of its Michelin tires.
Piero TARAMASSO, manager of the MICHELIN Motorsport’s two-wheel programmes, was delighted with the outcome: “What a fantastic display by our partner. Yamaha Racing GMT 94’s race showcased the performance of our endurance racing tire range across the full spectrum of conditions that the teams faced this weekend. On the dry, we were a match for the best and we gave an even more eloquent illustration of our solutions’ ability in the rain. The N°94 Yamaha was on the pace, just like the Team Viltais Yamaha in the Superstock class. I think victory might even have been a possibility had it not been for GMT 94’s fall at the start of the race.
“I think the global result speaks volumes for the development work we carried out on all the tires in our range throughout 2014. This work was facilitated by the first class dialogue we enjoyed with our partner and with the other Michelin teams. I am also very pleased with the strategic decisions that were the fruit of close collaboration between our partner and my staff. Winning a 15th endurance racing title is, to my eyes, the reward for a solid year-round effort together with Yamaha Racing GMT 94.”
Five years after the French firm’s last EWC crown with another Yamaha R1 (YART), Michelin’s score now stands at 14 FIM Endurance World Championship titles and one victory in the Endurance Masters.