WorldSBK

Evan Bros respond after own rider attacks team amid bitter title fight

Evan Bros. Racing has angrily reacted to Randy Krummenacher's public attack on his own team despite leading the World Supersport Championship

World Supersport Championship leaders Evan Bros. BARDAHL Racing have angrily responded to criticism levelled at them by they own title-leading rider Randy Krummenacher after he bluntly accused it of trying to favour his team-mate Federico Caricasulo in their WorldSSP championship fight.

The experienced Swiss rider, who has led the standings since round one but been locked in a momentum swinging battle with young Italian team-mate Federico Caricasulo throughout, launched a startling attack on the Evan Bros. Racing by accusing it of turning down the engine on his Yamaha YZF-R6.

Krummenacher believes he was noticeably slower than Caricasulo in a straight line, a fact likely magnified at the most recent WorldSSP round in Argentina with its longer straights. 

On Sunday evening he said: “I am straight and very honest, I don’t care about the consequence. It is really obvious they slowed me down, my engine doesn’t really go at all and I cannot stay in the slipstream. 

“The team boss," he replied when asked who was slowing him down. "Because obviously they need to let Caricasulo win. 

“I never had such a slow bike and I can’t stay in the slipstream off the GMT bike and I am pissed off, because they have to give me the same as him and they obviously don’t give the same. It’s very clear."

Figures from the weekend show Krummenacher was indeed slower than Caricasulo by ‘two to three km/h’, according to the team, but it believes the difference can be attributed by the differential in their frame, with Caricasulo far smaller than his team-mate.

Though Evans Bros. Racing showed empathy with Krummenacher’s concerns, he says ‘his accusations are completely without foundation’.

“We are very sorry about the serious accusations made by Randy Krummenacher to some of the international media,” read a statement from the team. 

“The accusations are both unfounded and unexpected. We want to immediately underline that no favouritism has ever been shown within the team, not in previous races nor in this one. We are aware of the pressure that Randy was under this weekend, considering the prize on the table, but we can only strongly deny his accusations.

“Our team cannot afford to treat its two riders any differently, considering that we are fighting for the Supersport world title along with other teams and other riders. Our intention is only to allow our riders to head up the championship classification, without favouring one over the other.

“Initial checks carried out post-race have shown that over the entire race, there was an average difference of only two or three km/h between Caricasulo’s speeds and those of Krummenacher, Caricasulo the faster, as was the case on other occasions too, for reasons relating to weight and aerodynamics.

“We have compared Randy’s speeds with those of Cluzel, the winner of Sunday’s race and the performance of the two engines is very similar, despite the significant weight difference that also exists between the riders in this case. 

“We therefore want to reaffirm that Krummenacher’s accusations are completely without foundation. In the coming days, we will carefully analyse all the data collected this weekend, so that we have an even clearer picture of the situation.

“We hope to resolve this issue as soon as possible, providing further proof that confirms our absolute good faith, of which we are absolutely certain.”

Why does Krummenacher think Yamaha is favouring Caricasulo?

Caricasulo is a member of Yamaha’s fairly new ‘blU crU’ rider programme and stands to progress through to WorldSBK with the GRT Racing team next year on a latest generation Yamaha YZF-R1

Though this won’t change depending on who wins the title – not least because Krummenacher is seeking alternative employment next year – his opinion is as simple as Yamaha wanting its protégé to succeed to prove its rider programme as a success.

Ironically, both riders struggled in Argentina with Krummenacher – a four-time race winner in 2019 – in seventh and Caricasulo fifth. It means Krummenacher, despite his protestations, is eight points clear of Caricasulo with one round of the season to come at Qatar – where he is unlikely to have much support from the team now.

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