International Road Race Legend from Yesteryear: Werner Daemen

The international road racing legend of yesteryear, where has he gone, what is he up to now, and how does he view today's road racing sport? In this section, we ask these former heroes a series of (the same) questions. This week: Werner Daemen.

Werner Daemen

Who is Werner Daemen?

Name : Werner Daemen
Nickname : "de Kleine Witte" (Translation: The Little White one)
Born on : 17-07-1971
Nationality : Belgian
Residence: -
Start of road racing career : 1993
Active in : Belgian Championship 250-400, WorldSSP, WorldSBK, IDM Superbike, FIM EWC
Number of titles : 3x Belgian Champion, IDM Superbike, Vice World Champion FIM EWC
End of road racing career : 11-08-2011 after a crash
Current profession : Team Manager FIM EWC BMW Factory Racing Team

How did you first get involved in road racing?

After being a regular spectator at the Belgian Championship, I started racing myself and was a big fan of Michel Simeon, Xavier Simeon's father.

Which rider did you have the best battles with on the track?

Jorg Teuchert, both in IDM and WorldSSP.

Best motorcycle you've ridden and why?

The Honda RVF 750 (Race version of the RC45) was way ahead of its time.

Favorite Circuit you have raced?

Spa-Francorchamps. It's the most beautiful circuit in terms of location, layout, and technique; a circuit where you really need to have guts.

What is the strangest or most hilarious experience you've had in racing?

During my very first training in the World Championship (at Donington – WorldSSP). It snowed, and my clip-ons came loose, causing me to fall. I restarted from the pits and realized after 100 meters that I had forgotten my gloves. After one lap in the training, I returned to the pits.

Do you have a special memory of racing in the Netherlands?

CMSNL is based in the Netherlands
Yes, in a World Championship race, I was in third place with two laps to go when I fell. Besides that, the crowd in Assen is always amazing.

The best thing you've gained from racing

Lots of friends and memories of wonderful people from all over the world.

Werner Daemen with Factory BMW

What did you do after your active road racing career?

I became a manager of an IDM team and various World Championship teams.

Are you still involved in the sport in any way?

Yes, 100%, still fully active in the sport.

Which current or past motorcycle would you like to ride?

The BMW M 1000 RR in WorldSBK specification.

For which current rider do you have a lot of respect and why?

Toprak Razgatlioglu, because he is a mega-talent but has always remained himself.

Who do you see as the greatest (currently active) road racing talent and why?

Toprak in WorldSBK, Colin Veijer in the BeNeLux.

Who will be the 2024 MotoGP & WorldSBK world champions?

Marc Márquez in MotoGP, Toprak Razgatlioglu in WorldSBK.

With your experience, how do you view the current developments within international road racing?

We need new talent competitions. The current Moto3 is simply too expensive, and the bikes in WorldSSP 300 are just not fast enough to make a difference. Twins might be the solution. 110HP approximately with 150 kg is okay.

Is there anything you'd like to add?

Yes, I still hope there will be a competition in the BENELUX where we get Assen, Zolder, Spa, and Mettet on the calendar, a competition where new talents can develop. That the motorcycle brands become more involved in the sport and the dealers get back into it.

This blog was written in collaboration with

issued: Thursday, May 16, 2024
updated: Thursday, May 16, 2024

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