FIM Sidecar: 2020 season cancelled due to COVID-19 pressures

FIM Sidecar: 2020 season cancelled due to COVID-19 pressures

FIM Sidecar: 2020 season cancelled due to COVID-19 pressures

Tim Reeves and Mark Wilkes

It is with heavy hearts and a deep sense of regret that in conjunction with the FIM, the decision has been taken to abort the planned five-round series for the current year.

Despite all our best efforts early in the year negotiating dates and facilitating an on-line entry system, the ever-changing situation between countries, and the various lock-down measures implemented as a result, destroyed any confidence teams and organisers had that travel would be possible, or even predictable.

The risk of a fourteen-day quarantine penalty imposed at the drop of a hat, is something most of our teams could not entertain. Virtually all of them have work and family commitments which they need to be home for after each race. That apart, the general uncertainty as to the situation going forward makes it impossible to plan with any degree of assurance.

The FIM is fully behind the decision, and this is yet another casualty in their sporting year with which they have had to deal.
We can all hope that going into 2021 the roadmap for the future is clearer, and we are able to bring you a Sidecar World Championship worthy of the name.

One thing is certain. All the hard work and planning already done will not be wasted. We have a solid relationship and the support of the FIM. We have a new on-line entry portal which makes it easier to enter. We have established good connections with circuit owners and organisers, and we are in great shape for the future.

Santander Salt/RKB-F1 Motorsport wishes to acknowledge all the hard work done, and extends thanks to all teams, colleagues, officials and all at the FIM who have worked tirelessly to get our beloved sport up and running again.

Here’s to 2021. Stay safe all.

FIM Sidecar: 2020 Calendar, Update 27th June

FIM Sidecar: 2020 Calendar, Update 27th June

FIM Sidecar: 2020 Calendar, Update 27th June

Tim Reeves and Kevin Rousseau
In line with the latest FIM update, the RKB-F1 Santander Salt organisational team are finally in a position to publish a schedule for 2020 which will allow a meaningful World Championship to take place. It has been a difficult juggling act in an ever-changing situation, with differing country rules and regulations playing a major part in the decision making.

Regrettably, the regular Le Mans World Endurance event scheduled for late August is now obliged to run without support classes, in a bid to keep as few personnel on-site as possible.

This means the Le Mans organisers have no choice but to forego their annual sidecar race inclusion, but are absolutely emphatic that sidecars are back on track for 2021. They consider the FIM Sidecar World Championship an important component in their 24 hour race weekend.

The intended German round at Lausitzring over the weekend of 14-16 August, is another casualty, but talks are still ongoing to find a replacement.

Just one clash with The Molson Group British Championship, whereby it will be impossible to do both events, and one combined World/British event at Brands Hatch two weeks later in October, make for a very varied and fascinating title chase, albeit shorter than planned.

Once again, we are governed by Government guidelines and all rules and regulations as they evolve. Ever mindful of this, and always with one eye on the global situation, we now have a championship worthy of the name, and we look forward to delivering the events laid out below.

Revised firm dates are as follows –

New schedule is :-

September 4-6 Rijeka, Croatia
September 26-27 Pannoniaring, Hungary
October 2-4 Oschersleben, Germany
October 16-18 Brands Hatch, Great Britain
October 23-25 Estoril, Portugal

 

All interested teams are now urged to submit their entries at the earliest opportunity, so that we can formulate strong grids at every round.

FIM Sidecar: 2020 Calendar, Update 29th May

FIM Sidecar: 2020 Calendar, Update 29th May

FIM Sidecar: 2020 Calendar, Update 29th May

FIM Sidecar World championship logos

With the ongoing impact Internationally and continued travel restrictions due to the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the FIM and RKB-F1 Santander Salt organisational team have been obliged to make the following changes to the 2020 calendar.

With the support of the Hungarian Motorcycle Sport Federation (MAMS), the round originally scheduled at Pannoniaring on 27-28 June is now postponed to September. The new date is to be confirmed.
For the same reason, the British round initially scheduled on the 25/26 July is also postponed. The Promoter, the FIM and the ACU are working hard to find a new date.

We would like to thank everyone involved and affected for their understanding during this period, as we continue to work hard to preserve as much of the 2020 championship as possible whilst taking into consideration and respecting all the protocols in place. We are also monitoring the various national announcements day-by-day in order to ensure the safety of all involved persons.

Further information will be communicated as soon as we have more
developments.

Revised dates are as follows –

DATE VENUE COUNTRY FMN
TBC TBC GB ACU
29-30 August Le Mans France FFM
4-6 September Rijeka Croatia HMS
26-27 September TBC Pannoniaring Hungary MAMS
3-4 October Oschersleben Germany DMSB
17-18 October Lausitzring Germany DMSB
24-25 October Estoril Portugal FMP
RKB-F1 Sidecar Racing plans under constant review in the face of Coronavirus pandemic

RKB-F1 Sidecar Racing plans under constant review in the face of Coronavirus pandemic

RKB-F1 Sidecar Racing plans under constant review in the face of Coronavirus pandemic

One month down the road from our last update, the global Coronavirus situation is still wreaking havoc in the sporting world.

We, the sidecar racing fraternity are every bit as much affected as all other branches on motor sport, and indeed any event where people congregate in large numbers.

Much of the world, and almost every single European country has been locked down since early March in an effort to stop the spread of the disease, and restore some normality to our daily lives.

There are however, green shoots of hope and improvement showing in some of those countries who were either quick to respond initially, or now think the worst is behind them.

But, there can be no illusion that the road back to complete normality will be a long one, and there is no “silver bullet” or miracle cure for what we are going through. Until a vaccine against this silent assassin is developed and made widely available, the social distancing measures, and prohibition of large gatherings will be maintained. That fact alone casts a long shadow over plans for any sporting events involving spectators.

We within RKB-F1 are in almost daily contact with our eager organisers and circuit owners to bring you the planned schedule for both British and FIM Worlds rounds in 2020. But, until all countries publish their plans for emergence out of this crisis, any firm commitments are impossible to make. 2020 is still a season which promised much for all of us, and it is a cruel twist of fate which has robbed us thus far of any racing.

But this is a situation reaching far beyond our world of sidecar racing. Many lives have been lost, and will continue to be lost until this virus can be brought under control. The world is at a standstill, and we can only hope and pray, that normality, albeit a new form of normality, will be restored soon.

We are intent on delivering two forms of Championships for this year, and those efforts are being tirelessly pursued by the RKB-F1 team.

In the meantime, we are certainly in good shape for 2021, as we have developed good relationships with our new overseas circuit partners, and our contact with MSVR and the BSB world is now well and truly cemented.

Please rest assured we will bring you any firm news once we have it, but in the meantime, stay safe and keep smiling. We WILL be back at the very earliest opportunity.

FIM Sidecar: 2020 Calendar, Update 29th May

FIM Sidecar: Latest calendar update FIM Sidecar World Championship

FIM Sidecar: Latest calendar update FIM Sidecar World Championship

The ongoing and fast-moving situation with COVID-19 and the way it is impacting on global sport has us all on our toes.

The RKB-F1/Santander Salt organisational team, along with the FIM, is working frantically behind the scenes to try and deliver the promised new-look FIM World Championship.

A crystal ball would be a wonderful attribute at this time, but in the absence of such a valuable insight into the future, it really is an impossible task to predict just when this situation will improve.

One thing is certain, any races scheduled later in the year will seriously compress all dates, and place enormous pressure on teams and organisers.

For that reason, and bearing in mind the other dates towards the end of the year, the decision has been made to take Assen, originally scheduled for late September, out of the equation.

The Assen round will therefore not take place, and thus reduces the full list of scheduled rounds to seven.

We can only watch and wait as to when things will improve, but rest assured they will improve. Let us all hope that by the end of May, we have clear sight into the future, and can see The Pannoniaring in Hungary on the horizon.

The situation is under constant review, and all at Santander Salt and RKB-F1 Motorsport continue to wish you and your families a safe passage through this difficult time.

Revised dates are as follows:

27-28 June Pannoniaring Hungary
25-26 July Brands Hatch UK
29-30 August Le Mans France
4-6 September Rijeka Croatia
3-4 October Oschersleben Germany
17-18 October Lausitzring Germany
24-25 October Estoril Portugal
Seeking a Press, Media and TV person

Seeking a Press, Media and TV person

Seeking a Press, Media and TV person

Whilst we are all in this suspended state, with not very much happening on the surface, it does not mean the feet are not paddling away below.

We at RKB-F1 Motorsport are hard at it planning what hopefully will turn out to be the season we all want. Given we now have 2 Championships running in parallel – The UK and World, we are looking to expand the team on the ground on race weekends, particularly in the area of PR, Social Media and TV.

Ideally we see the person filling this part-time role as a graduate, or a young person wishing to gain experience in the world of marketing and PR with a view to progressing in the field of sport journalism, television or similar.

We currently have TV footage edited and produced for our own website and YouTube channel, whilst the World Championship has a bespoke highlights package produced by the FIM. We are also considering taking interviews and video snapshots at both series, to edit into those shows.

This is an opportunity for a keen graduate or young person to be exposed to the world of motor sport media, and to learn from our already experienced personnel some of the tricks of the trade. More than anything initially, it needs to be considered as work experience, with a view to moving ahead as things develop.

If you feel this is something you would like to become involved in, and are interested in exploring this further, please make contact in the first instance with karen@bgsp.co.uk by sending a current CV along with a covering letter.

We look forward to hearing from you!

The RKB-F1 Motorsport Team

Uncertain times ahead maybe – but we’re all ready and waiting

Uncertain times ahead maybe – but we’re all ready and waiting

Uncertain times ahead maybe – but we’re all ready and waiting

Lights at start line

There can be no denying that what the world is going through with the Coronavirus pandemic right now, is something none of us has ever lived through before.

We have all heard our parents and grandparents waxing lyrical about the hardships that “The War” brought to their daily lives. Indeed Uncle Albert from Only Fools and Horses coined the phrase “durin’ the war” to the constant annoyance of Rodney and Del Boy.

The unprecedented changes and restrictions being imposed on us are hard to take, but we all understand the reasons why.

We have hitherto lived our lives in our own bubble of protected and precious existence whatever form that might take, and for those of us in this great circle of sidecar racing, it is a special bubble.

We have seen the unimaginable happen in the sporting world with Premier League and International football matches cancelled or postponed indefinitely. The mighty Formula One, MotoGP, the Isle of Man TT and World Superbike, along with all other major sporting events where large crowds gather, have all been put on the back burner until goodness knows when.

The British Superbike Championship, with whom we run our series, will make those decisions on our behalf, and theirs is not an easy task. Stuart Higgs and his team have tough calls to make over the next few weeks, and we can only watch and wait.

I am, and always have been, a purveyor of joy and hope – ever the optimist, and I would like to say to you right now that if you sit tight for a couple of weeks, it will be business as usual. But the bottom line is that we simply do not know when this will end, so we must stay ready, remain positive and aim for the golden moment when the wheels turn again in anger.

We’re all dressed up, raring to go, and the party has yet to start – but it will. We have championships to fight for, both British and World, and we have the third running of the absolutely brilliant Cadwell Sidecar Revival to look forward to. The anticipation will only get stronger, and when we return to action – what fantastic action it will be.

Stay strong everyone, stay positive and keep out of trouble, but above all, follow the common sense Government guidelines, and we will all be together on the grid once restrictions are lifted.

Meanwhile, keep polishing and dreaming.

The RKB-F1 team wishes you all the very best through this difficult time.

FIM Sidecar: World Sidecar Championship Calendar 2020 announced

FIM Sidecar: World Sidecar Championship Calendar 2020 announced

FIM Sidecar: World Sidecar Championship Calendar 2020 announced

RKB-F1 Motorsport in association with Santander Salt Ltd has reached an agreement with the FIM (the International governing body of motorcycle sport) whereby they have arrived at an eight round series across seven different countries for the 2020 FIM World Sidecar Championship.

This is the result of extensive discussions between new series promoter Roger Body, the FIM, the circuit organisers, and a large degree of cooperation and advice from German former ace driver Ralf Bohnhorst.

“Bohni” as he is affectionately known, has been very involved organising the series in recent years, building a sound platform from which to move forward.

The dates have been thrashed out with careful thought to selection of prime venues, each with a strong sidecar tradition. As we go to press, the calender is now cast in stone.

This marks a new era for what is the longest surviving world motorcycle championship still in its original format, with the capacity limit now exactly as it was way back in 1949 the inaugural year.

The RKB-F1 Motorsport team has a strong track record over ten years with the British Championship, arguably the most successful domestic series on the planet. This experience and enthusiasm will be brought to bear in cementing the FIM World Championship as the absolute pinnacle of sidecar circuit racing globally.

The new-look World series kicks off at the traditional EWC Endurance weekend at Le Mans. From there, the teams trek to the dramatic Lausitzring in Germany to join none other than the prestigious DTM German Touring Car Championship, before heading for the Hungarian Pannoniaring. There will then be a UK round with the BSB event at Brands Hatch in July.

Croatia and the Rijeka track come next, with the organisers obligingly shifting their date to late August. Assen comes next at the popular BSB fixture, then it’s off to the tried and tested Oschersleben for the penultimate clash, before the spectacular Estoril circuit in Portugal brings down the curtain on what is bound to be a brilliant season.

A title sponsor is yet to be named, but negotiations are in full swing in that direction, and it is anticipated that grids will be full, so the spectacle will be high.

There will be a continuation of the television coverage the series has enjoyed thus far, and maximum exposure track-side.

This venture marks the re-emergence of sidecar racing at the highest level, and is just the beginning for the RKB-F1 team in this arena.

Administration and entries for this championship, as with the British series, will be by Mike Dommett and his Bemsee organisation. Communication has already gone to all top teams on his radar, but for crews interested in registering for the FIM World Championship, then contact details are as follows:-

Mike Dommett, CEO BMCRC (Bemsee)
Email – mikedommett@hotmail.com
Telephone – 01708 720305
Mobile – 07979 963572

Dates are:-
April 18-19 – Le Mans France EWC Endurance
May 16-17 – Lausitzring Germany DTM Championship
June 27-28 – Pannoniaring Hungary Alpe Adria Series
July 25-26 – Brands Hatch UK BSB
August 29-30 – Rijeka Croatia
September 17-20 – Assen Holland BSB
October 3-4 – Oschersleben Germany
October 24-25 – Estoril Portugal

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