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Thread: Racing Success or Lack Thereof

  1. #1

    Racing Success or Lack Thereof

    I look around the motorcycle racing world, road racing that is, and don't see a lot of success for the BMW S1000 platform. IOM is probably the exception. Anybody out there have an explanation? Lack of factory support? High cost to race the platform? General unsuitability for racing? By all accounts it seems to be a wickedly fast street machine.

    Larry

  2. #2
    Registered User greenwald's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by royaltyl View Post
    I look around the motorcycle racing world, road racing that is, and don't see a lot of success for the BMW S1000 platform. IOM is probably the exception. Anybody out there have an explanation? Lack of factory support? High cost to race the platform? General unsuitability for racing? By all accounts it seems to be a wickedly fast street machine.

    Larry
    Good question, Larry.

    But lot's of "wickedly fast street machines" out there. Not all are 'race bikes.'

    Lack of corporate sponsorship, high costs to field a team, excessive electronics - all combined to keep it off the platform. Not to mention, BMW is a little late to a party dominated by excellent Japanese race bikes.
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    Race Bikes

    Factory teams = wins and usually 2nd and 3rd place also.

  4. #4
    Left Coast Rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by royaltyl View Post
    I look around the motorcycle racing world, road racing that is, and don't see a lot of success for the BMW S1000 platform. IOM is probably the exception. Anybody out there have an explanation? Lack of factory support? High cost to race the platform? General unsuitability for racing? By all accounts it seems to be a wickedly fast street machine.

    Larry
    Look at what the top riders are on and those will be the bikes that are winning. After coming close to winning the World Superbike Championship, BMW folded their factory team a few years ago and with it went the budgets and the riders. Plus, they haven't made any significant improvement to the bike in forever.

    Right now Rea, Sykes and Davies (and occasionally Melandri) are the class of the field and it shows. If you want to talk about a bike which works extraordinarily well on the street but not so much on the track, look at the Honda CBR1000RR.

  5. #5
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    I understand your observation; however, I donít completely agree. It really depends on where you are looking for results.

    The US has never been friendly territory for a BMW campaign. The AMA ProSBK and the successor promoter Daytona Motorsport Group rules were not at all friendly to BMW, or just about anyone other than a UJM company, mounting a campaign here. By the time Wayne Raineyís MotoAmerica Road Racing took over the series and made sense of the rules the BMW racing business model didnít work.

    North of the border BMW S1000RR riders have taken 5 of the last six CSBK championships and an S1000RR is currently in the lead for this years series.

    WorldSBK is a complicated story of conflicting business goals and plans for BMW and Bridgepoint Capital. Bridgepoint purchased Infront, the WSBK promoter, and Dorna of MotoGP fame. World Cup Football (soccer) tv rights was Bridgepointís main reason for purchasing the two promoters. They focused on that while motorcycle racing was rolled up under Dorna eye.Their dithering with MotoGP rules and turning WSBK into their bastard stepchild played a large part in BMW Motorrad changing their business model.

    BMWís full factory effort came incredibly close to taking a WSBK championship. Poor rider judgement resulted in several DNFs. In the case of Donington Park that year, an over eager teammate took both factory bikes out of the race and resulting in no points. BMW had done its part with factory money, development and support. Iíll stop before I blow up in a total rant.

    BMW Motorrad made a business decision based on the FIM and Dornaís rule dithering. Engine development was pulled back to the factory at the old F1 engine shops. Chassis and team support would be done at a national level. BMW Italia, then the largest S1000RR market, was given WSBK and campaigned for a while. Privateers have had mixed success.. Troy Corser tried and failed to put a team together.

    Currently Althea Racing is flying the BMW S1000RR flag. BMW reached out to Althea when it decided to build and race in SBK . The Altea team resides in the netherworld of not a factory team but something more than a privateer. Althea BMW is currently 4th in the constructor standings behind Kawasaki, Ducati and Yamaha. Aprilia, MV Agusta and Honda trail BMW.

    The S1000RR has had success on the European continent at the national level. Racing budgets are determined at the national level not the MotherShip. The MotherShip continues to develop the engine and the primary chassis while national teams bend their efforts to their countries racing series needs.Many countries run their own national Superbike series. BMW scored its first S1000RR victory of any kind in the German series and has taken the German, Swedish and some other national series. BMW Motorrad France has focused on endurance. BMW Motorrad UK has not tackled BSB rather has helped with Isle of Mann and some other racing.

    Elsewhere in the world the S1000RR is actively campaigned. For example, the S1000RR was ridden to two Australian Superbike championships and is still active.

    That is the Beemer [url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tifosi]Tifosi[/ulr] case for what the S1000RR is doing in the racing world. Putting the BMW racing banner down for a moment, BMW racing is at something of a crossroad. The S1000RR had gotten long in the tooth when compared to others.

    Kawasaki has been riding a wave of wins in WSBK after deciding that was where it would race. Ducati has long been a force and that force has grown stronger under the VWAG ownership. They have a new engine for the series in 2018. Yamaha left WSBK briefly but returned with a vengeance. Honda has a new engine and chassis in the works too.

    Touted as a 750 unit production run of racing bikes BMW is pinning its hopes on the new HP4 Race. While others are building V4 engines, the BMW engine plant has continued with the I-4, albeit revised significantly. Look for groups like Althea Racing to develop and homologate the extra chassis and racing bits to help refine the MotherShips new racing S. Alas as fired up as one might get reading and daydreaming about the new bike, the BMW Board of Management has kept the same racing business plan.
    Pass the mustard and UP THE REVOLUTION!

  6. #6
    FUKENGRUVEN SURVIVOR akbeemer's Avatar
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    The old saw, "Win on Sunday, sell on Monday" isn't working so well these days. Manufacturers are always looking at the potential return on investment. BMW evidently calculated that the potential returns (sales) do not justify the expenditure of racing. Additionally, corporate BMW is probably still smarting from the humiliating failure of their last foray into F1. Must gall the BMW leadership to see Mercedes doing so well in F1.
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  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by BC1100S View Post
    Look at what the top riders are on and those will be the bikes that are winning. After coming close to winning the World Superbike Championship, BMW folded their factory team a few years ago and with it went the budgets and the riders. Plus, they haven't made any significant improvement to the bike in forever.

    Right now Rea, Sykes and Davies (and occasionally Melandri) are the class of the field and it shows. If you want to talk about a bike which works extraordinarily well on the street but not so much on the track, look at the Honda CBR1000RR.

    Interesting comparison of S1000RR to CBR1000RR as street machines:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WmVMOr7TIrc

    .

  8. #8
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    Crazy is the operative word for that video.

    The S1000RR went against the ďold sawĒ then. Expectations were high when it made its debut in a SA race only to fail again and again on the track. Teething problems is a gigantic understatement for what the BMW superbike team was going through.

    The showroom was another story. The world wide superbike market was estimated to be someplace just north of 100K units per year. The stated business goal was to capture 10% of that. By the time the S reached the showroom the world market had declined to someplace between 60-70K units, yet the S far out performed the original expectations.
    The original street bike was very good and improved with each iteration of development spurred by racing developments. WSBK has a strong link between track and street.

    Blame the pull out of the factory team on the world decline in motorcycle sales 2009 and after, the goofy rules promulgated by the FIM and Dorna and timing.
    1)Sales of this segment were declining yet they were getting their return. There is a temptation for boards to take the money and run instead of racing. They did both. They got out of WSBK and saved the big bucks while they have gone racing at a national level where the ROI can be more closely monitored and managed.

    2) The FIM and Dorna were coming up with all sorts of goofy rules. Ducati received a huge weight advantage because of the way the rules sought to balance out the difference between a V-Twin and I-4 ability to make power. That is just one example of rule changes made to try and keep the series alive.

    3) Timing. BMW was heading to the development mature end of the S1000RR. It was harder to overcome Ducatiís ability to thread the rules. At the same time Dorna wanted Kawasaki and Yamaha to return to WSBK. Both received rules tweaks that other teams did not. Kawasaki has taken excellent advantage of these.

    For years the Board of Management has been happy with the money made racing then selling the S1000RR their accounting gnomes have taken to the bank.

    I donít know that F1 was all that humiliating. I never understood why BMW decided to become a team owner. Engine supplier made sense but everything that goes into being a F1 constructor never did to me. The Board of Management was meeting at the same time Bernie was cheating while playing Indian poker with FOTA. The BoM decided to get out of that poker game and went home ... to sell off the F1 team ... and go DTM racing.
    Pass the mustard and UP THE REVOLUTION!

  9. #9
    BMW has a habit of going racing for a few years, reaping the benefits of the publicity, and then terminating the effort. They did it in the 1980s with the first G/S Paris to Dakar racing. They did the Paris to Dakar bit again later, late 1990s or early 2000s (I forget the exact years). They also did it with the R1100s and the Battle of the Twins. And then again with the SS1000RR.

    I'm sure they will do it again - somewhere with some bike sometime.
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  10. #10
    Registered User AKsuited's Avatar
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    BMW's have done well at the Isle of Man the last few years.
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  11. #11

    Lots of decent performance internationally.


  12. #12
    Left Coast Rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by mika View Post
    North of the border BMW S1000RR riders have taken 5 of the last six CSBK championships and an S1000RR is currently in the lead for this years series.
    Its the rider.

  13. #13

    Not your fathers bmw

    It probably just costs too much to field a racing team.
    Last edited by 43912; 08-02-2017 at 07:21 PM.

  14. #14
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    What does that, or the crazies in the other video, have to do with legitimate BMW racing? Am I missing something?

    The motorcycle made me do it? I agree with BC1100S; its the rider.
    Pass the mustard and UP THE REVOLUTION!

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by mika View Post
    What does that, or the crazies in the other video, have to do with legitimate BMW racing? Am I missing something?
    .
    No, it was just some s1000rr content I came across and thought it might be of parallel interest to those that follow s1000rr news.
    I have deleted the last link.

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