Disastrous opening round at Phillip Island for DesmoSport Ducati rider.
Three-time Superbike world champion Troy Bayliss is scheduled to undergo surgery on Tuesday to repair finger injuries sustained on both hands after crashing heavily twice at Phillip Island’s Motul Pirelli Australian Superbike Championship (ASBK) opener over the weekend.
The DesmoSport Ducati rider went down during qualifying on Friday, breaking the little finger on his right hand, however still pushed through to line-up in Saturday’s opening race.
After challenging up-front, the number 32 came into contact with Wayne Maxwell (Team Suzuki Ecstar Australia) heading into turn one, resulting in another fall that broke the middle finger of his right hand. Bayliss attempted to return to the grid for race two, however deemed it unsafe following the sighting lap.
“That’s not the way I thought this season would start, that’s for sure,” Bayliss commented. “Breaking the little finger on my left hand wasn’t ideal, but I was able to ride with it. The team did a great job in rebuilding the bike after the second crash.
“When I headed out for race two, I was confident I would be able to race and collect some points, even after confirming that I’d broken the end of my middle finger on my right hand. On the out-lap though, I just couldn’t pull the brake lever properly. I’m really disappointed, but I’m booked for surgery on Tuesday and I’ll be back, ready to ride for round two next month.”
The round was ultimately won by Yamaha-mounted privateer Aiden Wagner ahead of Cru Halliday (Yamaha Racing Team) and Josh Waters (Team Suzuki Ecstar Australia). Round two of the ASBK will take place at Wakefield Park in New South Wales on 22-24 March.