Race week has arrived for the Suzuka 8 Hours Endurance Road Race (Suzuka 8 Hours), a midsummer festivity for Japan’s two-wheeler fans. All 50 teams participated in the test day on August 2, under harsh and hot conditions.

Five test sessions were held, a 90-minute and a 75-minute session on Wednesday morning, followed by three sessions in the afternoon, 60 minutes, 90 minutes and 90 minutes long. As the track is not available for testing on August 3, the teams have been busy putting the finishing touches on their bikes in preparation for Qualifying on Friday, the Top 10 Trial on Saturday, leading up to the race on Sunday.

HRC’s factory team, Team HRC with Japan Post’s riders Tetsuta Nagashima, Takumi Takahashi and Xavi Vierge were all on scene.

Team HRC with Japan Post devoted a fair amount of its track time to help Vierge transition smoothly to the endurance bike following his participation in the Superbike World Championship (WSBK) last weekend. Takahashi had the most time on track in the morning sessions, with a few laps at the end of the afternoon sessions to confirm the final setup. Nagashima, on track during Session 3 to check the bike setup, set the team’s best lap time of 2 min 7.205s. Takahashi’s best lap was 2 min 8.060s, and Vierge’s best lap was 2 min 7.774s.

FULL RESULTS *Courtesy of FIM EWC Endurance World Championship

Takumi Takahashi 33

I feel relieved now that Tetsuta has joined us. If we had two WSBK riders instead of Tetsuta, I would have felt a lot of responsibility to perform strong, since I have a lot of experience in Suzuka 8 Hours, so I’m relieved. In the morning sessions, I was able to do the laps needed for tire selection, checked the data, and narrowed down my choices. Thanks to this test, I think we were better prepared for the race. In terms of lap times, 2 min 8s flat was the best I could do, but I didn't do a hot lap, so I'm not too concerned. It was a good test that gave us time to prepare well!

Private: Tetsuta Nagashima 33

I have been working hard to recover from my injuries in preparation for the Suzuka 8 Hours, so I am honestly happy that I have been selected to participate in the race and am now able to ride like this. I cannot say that I am 100% recovered from my injury, but I am at 60-70%, and there are no problems with my riding. If there was a problem, I would not be here, so I am fine, even though I was a bit worried. In today's tests, I was only on track for one session, but I was able to maintain 2 min 7s laps while the track temperature was high. We were able to check the bike and I think I was able to ride smoothly. Looking at our rivals, I think our team is the most consistent. We’ll continue to maintain our good form through qualifying and the race.

Private: Xavi Vierge 33

Since I was switching from a WorldSBK bike to an endurance bike, I did some basic checks and verified my riding in dry conditions. I was also able to do some long tests. Since this is an endurance race, I’m not too particular about the lap times, but I was able to average 2 minutes and 7s. I am in good shape, and I’m comfortable changing bikes without any problems, even though the tires I’m on are Bridgestones instead of the Pirellis in SBK. Last year I was just watching the Suzuka 8 Hours, but this time I’m racing so I am super happy. I hope to have a good week preparing for a good race!

Location Information

SUZUKA 8HOURS ESSENTIAL* Name: SUZUKA CIRCUIT Location: 7992 Ino-Cho, Suzuka-shi, Mie-ken 510-0295, Japan Track length: 5.821 kilometres Race distance: 8 hours Official website Suzuka Circuit Suzuka Circuit Operated by Honda-owned Mobilityland, Suzuka features a unique figure-of-eight layout and presents a considerable challenge for riders thanks to its wide variety of corners.… read more.

7992 Inoucho, Suzuka, Mie, Japan - View in Google Maps


POLE POSITION RECORD 2'04.934s Team HRC - Tetsuta Nagashima - Honda CBR1000RR-R SP (2022)
RACE RECORD 2'06.805s Kawasaki Racing Team - Jonathan Rea - Kawasaki ZX10RR  (2019)