Masters Historic Racing Series.
It’s at the Catalunya MotoGP circuit, on 8/9/10th of April that the first round of the 2011 ICGP championship took place.

Not a cloud in the sky, températures up to 29°C, the Spanish sun was there to follow the 24 riders who had come to do battle for this first round.

Balanced class with 13 350cc riders and 11 riders in 250cc class. Everyone is settling and takes part in the show sponsored by The Master Series.
In fact, this week end ICGP is invited by famous classic race cars. it hums and horsepowers is displayed without any shame.

Equality with owners of these machines we had 3 boxes at our disposition to install all ICGP riders.

The pits are the place of choice to be well installed, to follow the race and quiclky set up the machine. Me, the webmaster, I came and settled to give as much live information as possible.

Newcomers this year with Mike Edwards, Grant Boxhall (from Australia), Daniel Levieux, Peter Howarth, Heinrich Mohrhardt and Daniele Parravano. They have not come to do figuration and are well decided to do battle, their palmarès and the readiness of the motorcycle shows it.

Those who lead are there too, Guy Bertin, Ian Simpson and Robert Burns team, Walter Hoffmann, Yves Hecq came from Guadeloupe and of course Eric Saul.

The race promises to be superb. Eric Saul has come as a works rider for this first round, it’s Adolf Schneider who prepared a wonderful TZ 250 L. A motorcycle as new and nicely prepared, Adolf is a fine mechanic who has even planned a second bike.

The evening saw the discussion turned to the final gearing to use because don’t forgett that the main straight of the circuit is 1.2kms long ! We also have the right to an evening picture review commented by Eric who show us several of his old-timer race pictures, or Guy Bertin who share us a few anecdotes which bring us back to that period not so far from what ICGP seems to have naturally frozen.

The atmosphere is there as always, we’re swimming in a real Grand Prix !

First testing session at 5h45 for our 24 riders, seeking markers and trajectories, I hear that from the side of the track but some stand out quickly like Bertin Guy or Daniele Parravano with his YB2.

It's fast for some but for other it’s the engine failure ! No less than 7 motorcycle will stop on the side of the track waiting for the truck to bring them back to the pits.

Eric Saul seized during the 1st lap because of crankcase problems, André Gouin seized too on carburetor jetting problems, as Michael Wild, problems for Antony Hart and Mike Edwards, problems also for Richard Parker, it’s carnage for this first untimed testing session, the circuit is exigent !

Some of the riders immediately got into their stride while some needed more time. In both cases it is a great pleasure to ride on this magnificent circuit.

After this session ICGP riders were expected to pose for picture as honour of guest around race cars, then went to the briefing. Eric put one of his multiple caps , this time to do the translator to present the rules of the circuit accompanied by the race director.

Organisation is perfect and we are reminded that we are on the MotoGP circuit, no chicanes, no change, we ride in the footsteps of Rossi !!

So, the webmaster can no longer retain himself. When he was scouting for pictures of the circuit he rode on it using the Kawa 90 lent to him by Eric in order for him also to ride in the footsteps of Rossi, it’s now done !!

The qualifying session runs on saturday morning under ideal temperature and riders are well prepared. Guy Bertin took the pole with 2’04"095 closely followed by Christopher Bishop and Ian Simpson in the same second !!

Edwards is 2 seconds off the pole, Hoffmann and Parker at 4 seconds, then came Parravano and Howarth, Keller, Burns then Boxhall who's done only one lap because his ignition unscrewed.
Hart will seize and Levieux must stop because of a severed ignition wire. These 2 riders won’t be qualified but Eric convinces the race director to let them stard but on the last row.

In 250cc it’s Yves Hecq who took the pole easily in 2’09’225 followed by Clark, Boam and Saul at 2 seconds who used his second bike, Thorne, Auboiron then Gouin who spent the night to rebuild a complete bike, doesn’t seize !

Broken frame and engine seized during testing sessions, he rebuilt all during the night, nothing stop these riders !
Then follow Tabarly coming for the first time with his Rotax, Guillebert, Hamilton and Wild who ride slowly because he seized during testing session and was not confident with his rebuilt engine.

But late rebound in 350cc, Mike Edwards couldn’t start with his 350 tz prepared by Graham Veryard and he’s forced to use the second bike of Chris Bishop.

Two bikes wearing the same race number with only one which has passed technical verifications, it’s too much, race direction notice it and decide to disqualify him.

Eric Saul comes to plead his case and finally he is allowed to start at the latest row.

Results of qualifications :

After qualifying here is the starting grid :

The day goes on with the first race of 11 laps. the starting grid will stay the same for the both races.

This is the start with the hole shot of Guy Bertin closely followed in 350cc by Ian Simpson and Edwards who done a start absolutly crazy from the latest row.

Bishop, Richard Parker, Hoffmann and Hart complete the leading group. It runs very fast in the lead and the ranking change every laps.

Parker seems to have engine problems, he looses the leading group in the 6th lap and stops on the 7th.

At the middle race the leading group of 4 is escaping. Guy Bertin leading the race during the last 7 laps but it was without the presence of Mike Edwards, Simpson’s ex competitor in Superbike, who is waiting to the latest lap to pass Bertin. In the process he sets lap record in 2’02"402 and grabs the victory !!!

Edwards 1st, Bertin 2nd and Simpson 3rd are in the same second. Very good race for Walter Hoffmann very regular who finished 5th, Peter Howarth 7th and Daniele Parravano who came in 6th place in their first ICGP race.

Grant Boxhall finished in 8th place, he hoped to do better fault of qualifying session to refine the settings of his machine, there is still much work to do to have a machine in the top.

Grant seems to be a serious opponent who, doesn’t know everything to work Kawasaki, anyway arrived to be not to bad in lap time.

Robert Burns and Daniel Levieux complete the ranking. Bob Keller seized, and Antony Hart holed a piston.

Yves Hecq, poleman in 250cc, will do a perfect race because he won’t be worried in making everyone agree with an advance of 8s on his follower Eric Saul. Yves is at his top, his Rotax runs very strong, he makes the pole, the victory, his brother was there and has his eyes fixed on the finish line, but no worries, Yves was untouchable.

Behind it’s the fighting between Saul, Clark and Boam, Saul keeps them at good distance to ensure the 2nd place seeing the Rotax going away from his vision.

Follow Auboiron and Guillebert, very regular riders, who fights for the 5th and 6th place followed by Ewan Hamilton.

In 250cc it’s therefore a victory of Yves Hecq with a 2’10"503 lap time, followed by Eric Saul 2nd then Steve Boam 3rd.

André Gouin condident in qualifying will seize, Michael Wild too, Peter Thorne will have a petrol pipe problem, and Bernard Tabarly a break of the shift lever.

Podium 350cc

Podium 250cc

Ranking of the first race :

After this race the discussion is at the preparation of the next race. André Gouin is going to modify one more time his carburator setting after advise from other riders who think that petrol is different regarding the brand used.

Bob Keller will be lent an engine by Graham Veryard to participate to the 2nd race.

ICGP's real spirit is there, competitors but friends who share the same passion, Bob come from Brésil and Graham cannot see that he came from nothing, Graham doesn’t hesitate one seconde, great for Bob !

Isabel, Adolf Schneider’s wife who lend bike to Eric Saul, takes great care of us, nothing to say, she’s there for everything !

She goes beyond expectations, no lost time, Spanish and German specialities, we are very well treated and it is a great advantage for the organization of this weekend, thank you Isabel !!!

What a pleasure to escort a works rider ...

In the same time I regurlarly go to the press room to give live information, the page is followed by a large number of users and relayed on the Pit-Lane forum by Yves Kerlo.

ICGP is the mutual aid on all domains, the live was nearly stopped when the laptop started to fail, Serge Hecq was there fortunately !

We don’t know yet what he did to make it work but the result was there ...

On the next day the race is at 4h30.

Same starting grid for our riders, and this time it’s Chris Bishop who directly takes the lead followed by Mike Edwards who once again has made a crazy start from the last row.

Again a leading group with Bishop, Edwards, Bertin, Simpson, Parker, Hoffmann and Parravano.

But Be careful, up front it running faster than the first race because since the beginning they ride in 2’02, best time realized by Edwards during the first race !

And there no respite, it attacks hard, the ranking is different on each lap, the race is crazy for ours 4 leaders.

On the main straight it’s anxiety every lap for mechanics and spectators. Simpson, Bishop, Bertin and Edwards take successively the lead however a turn of events during the 9th lap, Edwards break his gear box and burst a hole in the crank cases.
Race is finished for him, find the video of his week-end there.

Parker is there but at 3 seconds from the leaders to ensure the 4th place.

In the 9th lap Bertin make the lap record with 2’01"862 but is passed in the next lap by Simpson who was quietly waiting behind since the beginning and trying to take the lead. He is passed by Bertin and Bishop in the last lap, and it’s Bertin who win with 5 hundredths of a second lead in front of Bishop !! Simpson finish 3rd.

A race completly crazy and worthy of our old-timer Grand Prix riders, Mestre explodes with joy and it’s euphoria at the foot of the podium.
Parker solved his engine problems which have caused him to work until very late in the night, Hoffmann and Hart have done a very regular race and will fight together for the 5th and 6th places, followed by Parravano and Grant who improves his best time by 4 seconds, and Robert Burns who finish the ranking.
Daniel Levieux seized on the 3rd lap, Peter Howarth who starts from the pits will quiclky hole a piston, and Bob Keller won’t manage to start his bike.

In 250cc Eric Saul, well decided to fight for the lead, changing his race strategy knowing possibilities of the duo Hecq/Rotax.

Eric moves a little bit before the light extinction but doesn’t think that it will be a problem and immediatly goes to the pursuit of the Rotax not letting it get ahead.

He was in GP attitude and passes Hecq in the 4th lap ! Unfortunatly in the same time it’s black flag for Eric, he got a stop-and-go and must pass by the pits !!

He restarts 13 seconds behind the 2nd rider who is none other than Steve Clark and thinking that everything is lost.

The next lap he sees Clark and Thorne in his crosshairs and once again he tries all for everything, and starts a crazy ascent to the 2 riders, doing the lap record 250cc in 2’07"734, passes Clark 3rd and Thorne 4th to finish 2nd, but cannot but cannot do nothing against Yves Hecq who finished 1st again for the 2nd race !
Pretty doubled for Yves.

For André Gouin the advice on carburator jetting were constructive because he finishes 5th without seizing.

Tabarly 6th, Auboiron 7th, Wild 8th and Guillebert 9th.

Hamilton will have a shift lever problem and Boam will seize.

Podium 350cc

Podium 250cc

Ranking of the second race :

Wonderful Catalan week-end on his MotoGP circuit, organization very well orchestrated to make run all these riders, everyone enjoyed the fabulous track in despite of some mechanical problems associated with this level of competition, no crashes to deplore or visits in the gravel trap.

Thanks to Gregory Flynn for his help.

The race was followed in LIVE TIMING on Circuit of Catalunya webite :

Rendez vous on 21-22th of May for the Assen race whose program is available.

The general results is available there

To retrieve the live information clic there

Results and analyses of qualifications by clicking on this file :

Results and analyses of 1st race by clicking on this file :

Results and analyses of 2nd race by clicking on this file :