The FIM Endurance World Championship has reached a significant milestone with the addition of a new 24-hour race on the legendary Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium.
The 24H Spa Motos will take place in early June 2022. The event breaks new ground with an innovative format: a night-time start on the Friday and a one-of-a-kind experience for spectators on the Sunday.
Previously, the 24 Hours of Liège was part of the world endurance calendar from 1973 to 2003. From June 2022, the legendary Spa-Francorchamps name will be added to the FIM Endurance World Championship calendar, with its ultra-fast, undulating layout and famous turns such as Raidillon.
The 24H Spa Motos will undoubtedly be the most demanding and the most exciting race of the FIM Endurance World Championship, with an all-new format: the race will be flagged off after sunset, at 10pm on the Friday, and finish on the Saturday evening. The Sunday will be entirely devoted to fans, as the championship’s major bike brands will be able to invite up to 10,000 supporters to ride a few laps of the Spa circuit in full safety conditions on their own bikes, alongside EWC champions.
The inclusion of the 24H Spa Motos along with the 24 Heures Motos, the Bol d’Or, the 8 Hours of Sepang winter round and the Suzuka 8 Hours grand finale will bring a new dimension to the 2021-2022 FIM EWC season.
This key new event will raise the championship’s competitiveness, attract new international riders and consolidate the DNA of the FIM EWC as the absolute benchmark when it comes to challenging races for riders, teams and machines alike.
François Ribeiro, Head of Eurosport Events, said: “This is a great day for the FIM Endurance World Championship. Racing at Spa-Francorchamps is one of the finest sporting challenges we can offer our riders and teams. Tradition will go hand in hand with innovation as they push their skills to the limits on this legendary track over a 24-hour duration, starting after nightfall at 10pm on the Friday to finish on the Saturday evening with a firework and a party atmosphere. The 24H Spa Motos will further enhance the competitive level of FIM EWC that Eurosport Events keeps raising since we became the promoter.
It will be a huge challenge to adapt the world’s most beautiful circuit to the FIM’s safety standards without compromising the current track layout while respecting FIA Formula One requirements, in conjunction with the two international federations. The President of the Circuit of Spa-Francorchamps, Melchior Wathelet, and the CEO, Nathalie Maillet, have led the project with great determination since our initial discussions in May 2016. I would like to thank Pierre-Yves Jeholet, Vice-President of the Walloon Government and Minister for the Economy, without whom it would not have been possible to write this new chapter as we approach the centenary of the Spa-Francorchamps circuit. Long live the return of motorcycle endurance racing to Spa!”
Melchior Wathelet, Chairman of the Board, Circuit of Spa-Francorchamps, said: “The return of motorcycle endurance racing to the Circuit of Spa-Francorchamps is an integral part of the circuit’s diversification strategy, and it is taking place in the best possible way, with a historic race being brought up to date thanks to a new race format that promises to be extremely interesting.”
Nathalie Maillet, CEO, Circuit of Spa-Francorchamps, said: “It is with great pride that we announce the return of motorcycle endurance racing to the Circuit of Spa-Francorchamps. This is a highly symbolic event in the run-up to our centenary, as the first race to be held on the Circuit in 1921 was a motorcycle race. The Circuit of Spa-Francorchamps is a magnificent showcase for motorsport, both two-wheel and four-wheel. The holding of a new world championship event on our historic track is proof of the attractiveness of our circuit. We are very pleased to be part of a championship with prestigious races.”
Franck Vayssié, Director of FIM CCR Commission: “FIM is delighted to see Spa-Francorchamps circuit adapting its infrastructure to safety standards required for FIM Endurance World Championship. We have worked with the circuit and Eurosport Events on that ambitious project and will keep working hand in hand with those two partners until circuit homologation and staging of the new great 24H race event. ”