Tag Archives: World Supersport 300

Jonathan Rea clean sweeps shortened Imola WSBK weekend

2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola
Sunday Superpole Race

Jonathan Rea had broke the winning streak of Alvaro Bautista on Saturday afternoon with victory in race one at Imola and the Northern Irishman did it again Sunday morning with victory in the ten-lap Superpole race. Rain then stopped play ahead of the Sunday afternoon race.

On a damp but drying circuit, there was drama before the race even started, as Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) missed the warm up lap and was forced to start from pit lane. leaving the 2013 WorldSBK champion with plenty of work to do in the early stages.

WSBK Rnd Imola Sunday Start
2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola
Sunday Superpole Race

With the race underway, Chaz Davies got the jump from pole position with Jonathan Rea side-by-side with the Welshman but it was the Ducati man that had his nose in front at turn two. Championship leader Alvaro Bautista (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) was third whilst Leon Haslam (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) held fourth in the opening stages of the race.

WSBK Rnd Imola Sunday Rea Bautista Davies
2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola
Sunday Superpole Race

With the race then settling down, a mistake from Chaz Davies at the final chicane allowed Rea and Bautista to push him back to third. Davies now had to put in the hard work all over again, as the reigning champion began to pull out an advantage.

WSBK Rnd Imola Sunday Rea Bautista Davies
2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola
Sunday Superpole Race

A heady battle unfolded for fourth place, this time with Michael van der Mark leading the battle from Toprak Razgatlioglu, Alex Lowes and Haslam, who had once again dropped down the order after a combative couple of laps from the Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team riders.

WSBK Rnd Imola Sunday Razgatlioglu Lowes Haslam
2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola
Sunday Superpole Race

Toprak Razgatlioglu however wouldn’t stay in the fight long, as he began to drop back through the field, his Superpole Race tyre not able to go the distance.

Similarly, Alvaro Bautista, who had also opted for the same compound, began to drop back towards his team-mate and with just five laps to go at the second part of Rivazza, Davies squeezed down the inside.

WSBK Rnd Imola Sunday Rea Bautista Davies
2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola
Sunday Superpole Race

Then, the two dominant forces of WorldSBK in the past four seasons – Rea and Davies – went head-to-head in terms of lap times, right on lap record pace and both having to keep that pace up right until the end.

The gap momentarily came down to below a second, but Davies was unable to get on terms with Jonathan Rea, whilst Bautista looked on from behind unable to run with the leading duo.

Jonathan Rea took the win with Davies and Bautista coming home behind him.

Jonathan Rea – P1

“It was a really positive weekend, to get my feeling with the bike here and be able to really get the maximum out of it. To pick up two race wins makes me really happy. I want to thank all the team for always believing and keeping on pushing. We never stopped believing that this weekend was a perfect opportunity for the chance to win. With our form here in the past, the way our bike works here and the way I ride – it was our chance. So we had to take it and I did, in both races. That was positive but unfortunately race three was cancelled because of the weather which came in. I completely understand and I am sure we will get our chance again.”

Chaz Davies – P2

“It’s a bit of a shame we never got the chance to do race 2 here at Imola but unfortunately in the wet this track has quite a few limits. Imola is not a normal circuit, and with these ups and downs you get a lot of standing water especially in the corners and these conditions meant that they had to cancel today’s race. It was the right decision, but I’m sorry for all the fans who stayed here in the rain all afternoon just to see us race. The positive thing is that we managed to do the sprint race, and judging by the result, it was a pity not to have been able to do the full-length second race. After a tough start to the season, I’m starting to see the light and my feeling with the Panigale V4 R is improving all the time. I go home from Imola knowing that I’ve made a lot of progress in view of the next races.”

Álvaro Bautista – P3

“Unfortunately the bad weather affected the second race, and it was raining really hard. The track conditions were dangerous, with a lot of water in some parts and streams crossing the track. It was too risky for the riders and it was the right decision to cancel the race. We feel really bad about that because we know that there are a lot of Superbike fans here, but rider safety is the most important aspect. Having the support of all the Ducatisti is incredible and even though I didn’t win a race, it was one of the best weekends in my entire career because I really felt their support. For this reason, I feel a bit sorry for them, but I think they will understand the situation.”

Michael van der Mark took his best Imola result in fourth position while his Pata Yamaha team-mate Alex Lowes rounded out the top five after battling sickness all weekend.

Michael van der Mark – P4

“We changed quite a lot on the bike for the Superpole Race and I immediately felt that the bike was better, especially in the areas we identified for improvement after Race 1 yesterday. This gave me a lot of confidence and my pace was a lot quicker compared to yesterday. I got a good start and had a little battle in the beginning, but that meant I just lost contact with Alvaro, who managed to pull a gap that I didn’t have time to close. But I had a good lead over the guys behind me and, while it wasn’t the most exciting race I’ve ever had, I was really happy with the feeling of the bike and my pace in the race. Unfortunately, we didn’t get the chance to take advantage of the improvements in Race 2 this afternoon, as it was cancelled due to the weather. It’s a shame because we wanted to race and everyone who’d braved the weather to be here wanted to see us race, but with so much standing water on the track it just wasn’t safe.”

Alex Lowes – P5

“The bike felt great in the Superpole race. I had a good battle with the Leon and Toprak in the early stages of the race, before pulling a bit of a gap on them. My best laps were near the end of the race and I felt that, maybe, if I’d have got clear sooner then I might have been able to have a good battle with Michael. But for us to finish fourth and fifth on what has previously been a tough track for us shows just how much we’ve improved. It gives me a lot of confidence going forward, now that we’ve been so competitive at what was probably our worst track last year. I’m really happy with the weekend; I’ve been up against it a bit with the sickness, but I’m quite proud of myself for how I’ve dealt with it and come out of it with some decent points. A big thank you to all the fans that turned out over the weekend, but especially today. Luckily, they got to see the Superpole race and then a thrilling Supersport race, but it was a shame they missed out on Race 2 because of the weather conditions. We had a lot of rain in a short space of time and there was a lot of standing water on track. This circuit has a couple of third and fourth gear kinks, which are really fast, and that’s exactly where the standing water was collecting. On a bike, surrounded by other riders at those speeds, it simply wasn’t safe enough to race this afternoon, unfortunately.”

After figuring more highly early on Leon Haslam eventually finished sixth.

Leon Haslam- P6

“I had exactly the same problem as in race one. I could not pass, could not follow the guys. When I had a gap I could go really fast. Compared to Jonathan we are losing under braking but on a positive note, in cornering, in the exits, and how I adapted my style in other areas, we made good steps. Jonathan is very good here and I knew it was going to be a tough weekend trying to adapt my style with the things I have struggled with, but it was a lot harder than I expected. We will take a fifth and a sixth.”

WSBK Rnd Imola Sunday Haslam
2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola
Sunday Superpole Race

Razgatlioglu was caught but not passed by a charging Sykes that had started from pit-lane, they finished seventh and eighth respectively.

WSBK Rnd Imola Sunday Sykes Melandri
2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola
Sunday Superpole Race

Jordi Torres was ninth while Markus Reiterberger completed the top ten.

WSBK Rnd Imola Sunday Torres Reiterberger
2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola
Sunday Superpole Race

Less than a second back, super-substitute Tommy Bridewell was 11th, a great ride from the Briton.

Wildcard Lorenzo Zanetti was in 12th, ahead of Sandro Cortese Hector Barbera and Michael Ruben Rinaldi completed the point scorers.

Shaun Muir, Team Principal BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team

“The summary of the day is that we proved again that the BMW S 1000 RR is getting very quick now. We have a good pace and I was looking forward to a dry race. In the Superpole race, Tom unfortunately had to start from pit lane. He did the sighting lap to the grid on race tyres. Due to the low temperatures, the tyre pressure slightly dropped below the limit. We will adapt the procedures to avoid this in the future. Tom’s race then was very positive. With his lap times he could have been battling for fourth position which is a fantastic position to be in. Markus went with a different tyre scenario. He was one of only four riders to opt for the SCX tyre. It was a gamble and he would have been very, very good if that would have worked out but unfortunately he lost the tyre before the race was finished. But anyway, we are happy with the top ten for Markus. Overall we can say after this weekend that we are now showing that with its pace the bike can be fast now at many circuits. We can carry this forward and it’s also important that we will have a test at Misano before Jerez because we once again have many things to test.”

WSBK Rnd Imola Sunday Reiterberger Cortese Sykes
2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola
Sunday Superpole Race

Race Two Cancelled

Following severe rain on Sunday afternoon in Imola, and after lengthy delays, the decision was finally made to cancel WorldSBK Race 2 and WorldSSP 300 races of the Pirelli Italian Round at Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola.

WSBK Rnd Imola Sunday Rain Track
2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola

With the heavy rain failing to stop, conditions deteriorated and therefore Race Direction and the Safety Commission took the difficult decision to cancel Sunday’s races in order to guarantee riders’ safety.

WSBK Rnd Imola Sunday Rain Lavilla
2019 WorldSBK
Round Five – Imola

Unfortunately, that signalled an early end to the fifth WorldSBK round of the season, which currently sees Alvaro Bautista with 263 points leading the WorldSBK championship standings followed by Jonathan Rea in second position on a strong 220-points.

The MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship will return into action at Circuito de Jerez Angel Nieto for the Acerbis Spanish Round from 7th June – 9th June 2019.

WSBK 2019 Imola Sunday Superpole Race Results

Source: MCNews.com.au

Rea breaks Bautista’s win streak with emphatic Imola victory

2019 World Superbike
Round Five – Imola

Off the line, it was a bright start for Rea, but he couldn’t get the better of Chaz Davies (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) down into Tamburello. However, on the run to Acque Minerale, Davies suffered a problem and was forced to retire, handing Rea the lead whilst Davies’ team-mate Bautista had second.

WSBK Rnd Imola Saturday Race Start
2019 World Superbike
Round Five – Imola

At the end of the opening lap, Rea and Bautista had the leading positions, whilst Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) occupied third and Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team) was riding well from eighth on the grid to be in fourth.

Completing the top five, Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team) whilst Leon Haslam (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK Team) slipped to sixth. One of the biggest movers and shakers on the opening lap was Toprak Razgatlioglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing), who was up four positions into seventh!

WSBK Rnd Imola Saturday Race Action Rea
2019 World Superbike
Round Five – Imola

As the race settled down, Rea built a comfortable lead and was extending his advantage over Bautista by around 0.7s per lap. Bautista in turn was escaping the attention of Sykes but the main battle through the race was for fourth, with van der Mark leading Lowes, whilst Razgatlioglu was now in sixth, ahead of Haslam.

WSBK Rnd Imola Saturday Race Action Bautista
Toprak Razgatliogl

Michael Ruben Rinaldi (BARNI Racing Team) was a rider making great progress too, all the way up into the top ten by the mid-point of the race from 17th on the grid. The Italian was putting in a fantastic performance for his and Ducati’s home fans. Fellow Italian and Independent rider Marco Melandri (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK) was also on the charge through the field.

British rider Alex Lowes began to slip back, having been ill all weekend. Soon, a traditional ‘Marco Melandri block-pass’ at the final corner by the Italian pushed Lowes back into eighth. However, he would soon be promoted as a disaster for Tom Sykes occurred, with the BMW S 1000 RR suffering more mechanical gremlins, robbing the 2013 WorldSBK champ of a certain podium.

WSBK Rnd Imola Saturday Race Action Melandri
2019 World Superbike
Round Five – Imola

Sykes’ demise promoted a huge battle between van der Mark and Razgatlioglu for the final podium position.

WSBK Rnd Imola Saturday Race Action Razgatlioglu
Toprak Razgatliogl

The Turkish star made his move in the closing stages and got ahead of van der Mark. Then, a grandstand finish between the two, swapping paint and trading blows on the penultimate lap, colliding twice and bringing Leon Haslam back into the mix. Imola was once more providing thrilling action.

WSBK Rnd Imola Saturday Race Action Haslam
2019 World Superbike
Round Five – Imola – Leon Haslam

Meanwhile, in a league of his own, Jonathan Rea blitzed the opposition in a vintage fashion, taking his first win of the season to end the run of victories by Alvaro Bautista. The Spaniard maintains a healthy championship lead with a second-place finish and then, in the battle for third, Toprak held on for his third WorldSBK podium! Michael van der Mark and Leon Haslam completed the top five!

WSBK Rnd Imola Saturday Race Action Van Der Mark
2019 World Superbike
Round Five – Imola

Inside the top six from a poor Tissot Superpole, Marco Melandri was ahead of Alex Lowes, with Michael Ruben Rinaldi eighth after his antics earlier on in the day. Lorenzo Zanetti (Motocorsa Racing) was an impressive ninth as his wildcard weekend unfolded. Completing the top ten, the sole-surviving BMW of Markus Reiterberger (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team).

Outside of the top ten was Jordi Torres (Team Pedercini Racing) who had a disappointing ride, whilst a phenomenal performance for super-sub Tommy Bridewell (Team Goeleven) saw the British rider come home in 12th. Hector Barbera (Orelac Racing VerdNatura), Ryuichi Kiyonari (Moriwaki Althea Honda Team) and Alessandro Delbianco (Althea Mie Racing Team) completed the points. Sandro Cortese (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK) had a fast crash at Acque Minerale in the closing stages.

It is Jonathan Rea’s eighth win at Imola and his 72nd career victory in WorldSBK, ending his longest winless run since 2013. It is also the 128th win for Kawasaki in WorldSBK.

WSBK Rnd Imola Saturday Race Podium
#ITAWorldSBK at Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari Imola: Race 1
1. Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK)
2. Alvaro Bautista (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) +7.832
3. Toprak Razgatlioglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing) +19.968

P1 – Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK)

“I am so happy that I finally got my first win this season, especially here in Imola where the fans are always incredible, the atmosphere is good, and I love the circuit. My team gave me a great bike, and since Assen I’ve been hard training, trying to visualize winning this race here, so I am glad I did it because I put a lot of pressure on myself. Now we can relax a little bit and enjoy this moment, but wake up tomorrow with the same target. Thanks to my team for never losing hope and continuing to push the bike. I am really satisfied with that victory ”.

P2 – Alvaro Bautista (ARUBA.IT Racing – DUCATI)

“It was amazing to race here in front of all the Ducati fans. They made this moment special! It was not easy for me since it was my first time racing here. We all had a strong pace, and we even set a new lap time record which means that the level is high. I had been struggling here more than in other race track, but still, I am pleased. Today Jonathan was really strong, his pace was incredible, but I am happy I finished second on the podium in front of all our fans”.

P3 – Toprak Razgatlioglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing)

“I am so happy to be back on the podium! My goal is to battle for it more often this season. Last year we didn’t make a good result here in Imola, so I am really pleased that we were able to make such a big step forward and even get to the podium”.

Source: MCNews.com.au

WSBK Imola Day One | Jonathan Rea back on top

2019 World Superbike
Round Five – Imola
Friday Report

Quick times were coming thick and fast as day one at the Imola circuit as the final Friday session concluded with the sun beating down on Imola.

Four-time WorldSBK champion Jonathan Rea continued his positive start to the Pirelli Italian Round, running at the front again in FP2. Despite not improving in his lap time from the morning until late on in the session, eventually nobody was able to challenge Rea at the front. Rea looked in fine form, stringing a run of fast laps together to continue Kawasaki’s good form in Ducati’s backyard.

Jonathan Rea – P1

“We tried to focus on understanding the different combinations of front and rear Pirelli tyres we have this weekend. We have some good information for tomorrow, especially looking through our split times. We still have a margin to improve in some splits where we are missing something, although we are not too far off. We will try not to compromise too much by looking for more in the other areas. At the end, I felt comfortable on the bike on used tyres and I tried hard, especially when I saw that my name was not on the top! It shows that it is there, the bike is there, and we will put everything together tomorrow. I feel comfortable with the bike making this rhythm.”

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday Rea
Jonathan Rea

His teammate, Leon Haslam, likewise did not improve his time in the second session until late on in the session but dropped overall, concluding the opening day in seventh position.

Leon Haslam – P7

“This morning I felt quite comfortable. This afternoon we did not have a good session because we tried a different tyre option that was not as good at the end. The lap times were not so great as a result but my feeling this morning was quite positive, so we will keep pushing overnight to be ready for tomorrow. The track is good, from what I remember of it, and there are a few areas I need to work on with my riding style. Generally, I love this circuit because it is fun to ride. Hopefully it will be good racing too.”

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday Haslam
Leon Haslam

Ducati continued their strong start to the Pirelli Italian Round, as Chaz Davies (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) marched his way into top position, at a circuit at which he has achieved four WorldSBK race wins at in his career. The Welshman blitzed into the lead with just a few minutes left in the session.

Chaz Davies – P2

“It’s been a while since I’ve ended Friday in the top 3 so that was pretty good and we made a big step forward. Honestly the momentum has been going the right way in the last couple of races and Imola is a good time to try and turn over the page a bit. Having said that, I’m not 100% happy with the feeling with my Panigale V4 R so I hope I can turn things around for tomorrow because I feel I’ve got some good margin to improve the lap time. If we can make the right changes, I don’t see why we can’t fight for the win tomorrow.”

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday Davies
Chaz Davies

Alvaro Bautista continued to adapt to the tricky Imola circuit and was seemingly struggling, making various little mistakes that he has not displayed all season. The Spaniard completed the day in fourth, with 0.712s between him and Rea.

Álvaro Bautista – P4

“Today was a positive day because it’s the first time I have ever raced at Imola. Right away I found a good feeling with the track, while unlike the other races, I still have to improve the feeling with my bike, especially in corner turn-in, but in the afternoon we made some changes and the feeling was better. Today we always worked in view of the race and we did more than the total laps with quite a good pace. Probably we still have to improve the stability of the bike because on this track the bike is almost always leaning and you don’t have any breathing space.”

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday Bautista
Álvaro Bautista

Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) had a relatively quiet session in comparison to those around him, making plenty of progress through the session. The 2013 WorldSBK champion is a double winner at the Imola circuit and looks primed for another strong showing, this time for the German manufacturer. Completing the session in third place, Sykes will be hoping to continue improving on Saturday. His teammate, Markus Reiterberger, struggled again and was only 13th.

Tom Sykes – P3

“We’ve again worked really consistently here in the Free Practises just trying various parameters with the chassis and also the tyres as we have more of a selection here. I have to say I’m really enjoying riding my BMW S 1000 RR at the moment, this track is always fantastic and the Italian fans are incredible so to be third fastest today makes me happy. I’m looking forward to tomorrow as I feel we can still improve, the target is certainly for front row and try and utilise the chassis of the S 1000 RR during the race.”

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday Sykes
Tom Sykes

If Toprak Razgatlioglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing) was rattled by not completing FP1 as top Independent, then he certainly made up for it in FP2 by rounding out the top five. The Turkish rider was pursuing Alvaro Bautista in the closing stages and made big gains, to end the opening day at Imola in a strong fifth place.

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday Razgatlioglu
Toprak Razgatlioglu

Other Independent riders to feature inside the top ten after Friday included wildcard Lorenzo Zanetti (Motocorsa Racing), who was ninth and one place ahead of fellow countryman, Michael Ruben Rinaldi (BARNI Racing Team) in tenth. Zanetti ended the day as top Italian.

Sixth position went to Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team), who maintained his FP1 position whilst vastly improving his time. The Dutchman’s continuity through the opening day at the Pirelli Italian Round bodes well for the remainder of the weekend.

Michael van der Mark – P6

“A solid start today. Imola is always a difficult track at which to find a good set-up, especially coming from Assen, which is very different in character. This morning I felt quite strong from the start and we managed to improve the bike further during the session. This afternoon we initially went a little bit in the wrong direction, but we stayed calm, wound back the changes slightly and, at the end, I felt really strong on the bike again. We had an issue with getting the bike stopped but, again, we managed to find some improvements in this area. My time would have been better but for hitting traffic on my fastest lap, but I’m really happy with the bike now and I think we can still improve further tomorrow. Overall, it’s been one of my best days in Imola so far.”

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday VanDerMark
Michael van der Mark

His teammate, Alex Lowes, also improved his time but was only eighth at the end of the day. The rider, who sits third in the championship behind Bautista and Rea, will have work to do overnight if he is to keep tabs on those ahead of him in the title race.

Alex Lowes – P8

“I’ve been struggling with a bit of a stomach bug since Wednesday, so I didn’t have too much energy today. On the bike I felt a little bit sick, so it was a case today of trying to learn as much as we can in the minimum number of laps. We actually got a lot more done that I thought possible; we’ve got a good direction and the bike feels good. Now I’m looking forward to having a bit more time to rest and recover and, hopefully, coming back a bit stronger tomorrow for the first race.”

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday Lowes
Alex Lowes

Notable names outside the top ten included Jordi Torres (Team Pedercini Racing) who was 11th at the end of the day, with Marco Melandri (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK) in 12th whilst his teammate, Sandro Cortese, was 14th and suffered a crash.

Marco Melandri – P12

“I struggled a lot today with the same issues as before. There wasn’t one area in which I was feeling bad or feeling good, I just feel it’s everywhere, so I’m missing confidence. The guys are working so hard to find a solution to suit me and we will find a way, step-by-step, but it’s not so easy. We don’t need a big improvement; even a small improvement would allow me to build confidence, ride a bit more how I know and reduce the gap to the front but, at the moment, we haven’t found what we need. Here I was expecting much better, so I’m obviously disappointed, but we will keep working.”

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday Melandri
Marco Melandri

Sandro Cortese – P14

“This morning wasn’t too bad and I was P12 while learning the track aboard the R1. This afternoon we wanted to try a long run on the hard front tyre but I think this was maybe a mistake on the opening day with my limited experience of this track. But we did it and I crashed, which wouldn’t have been an issue at any other track but with no service road here in Imola it’s impossible to get the bike back to the pit box before the end of the session, so that was the end of my first day. So, at the end, it was a bit of a tough day but it’s race day tomorrow and, in the race, anything can happen, so I’m staying positive.”

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday Cortese
Sandro Cortese

The Moriwaki Althea Honda Team concluded day one at Imola with Leon Camier and Ryuichi Kiyonari in 15th and 16th respectively.

Leon Camier – P15

“To be honest we are not that far away from the group in front. I think there are still a couple of little things we can do to improve the bike’s setup. I just hope the others don’t make another big step so that we can get closer tomorrow. We made some small improvements already this afternoon and were able to lower our lap times a little bit. We know that the weather forecast is looking a little uncertain for the next couple of days, Sunday especially, but I look forward to riding the bike in the rain, and we’ll see how it goes.”

Ryuichi Kiyonari – P16

“Before today, I had only ridden at Imola on one other occasion, around ten years ago, and to be honest today was more difficult than I expected. The track is very technical and demanding. It took both sessions to get used to it again, but finally things got better and at the end of FP2 I was much more comfortable. We tried some different tyre compounds and worked hard on the bike setup. Hopefully tomorrow we will be able to take another step forward.”

WSBK Imola Day One Combined Times
Pos Rider Bike Combined Times Gap
1 J.  Rea  ZX-10RR 146.374 0.000
2 C. Davies Panigale 146.529 0.155
3 T.  Sykes  S1000 RR 146.766 0.392
4 A. Bautista Panigale 147.086 0.712
5 T.  Razgatlioglu  ZX-10RR 147.124 0.750
6 M. Van Der Mark YZF-R1 147.214 0.840
7 L.  Haslam ZX-10RR 147.419 1.045
8 A. Lowes YZF-R1 147.537 1.163
9 L.  Zanetti Panigale  147.587 1.213
10 M. Rinaldi Panigale 147.638 1.264
11 J.  Torres ZX-10RR 147.870 1.496
12 M. Melandri YZF-R1 147.973 1.599
13 M. Reiterberger S1000 RR 148.113 1.739
14 S. Cortese YZF-R1 148.457 2.083
15 L.  Camier CBR1000RR 148.528 2.154
16 R. Kiyonari CBR1000RR 149.099 2.725
17 H. Barbera ZX-10RR 149.274 2.900
18 A. Delbianco CBR1000RR 150.063 3.689
19 E. Laverty  Panigale 151.747 5.373

World Supersport

The 2019 FIM Supersport World Championship roared back into life at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari circuit in Imola. The Italian saw home-hero Federico Caricasulo (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team) who ended day one on top. In FP2, two red flags were shown; the first due to a crash between Randy Krummenacher (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team) and Corentin Perolari (GMT94 YAMAHA) at Acque Minerale and a second from Thomas Gradinger (Kallio Racing) at the Variante Alta.

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday WorldSSP Friday Action Caricasulo
Federico Caricasulo

Federico Caricasulo will be hoping that topping day one at the Pirelli Italian Round was no fluke, as the Italian rider goes in a quest to win a second consecutive WorldSSP race. The Italian wasn’t able to improve on his time in FP2 and suffered a crash on the exit of Variante Alta in the final ten minutes. Jules Cluzel (GMT94 YAMAHA) was looking back to his old self and placed second overall but was on top in FP2, whilst Randy Krummenacher was third despite his crash and consequential problems.

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday WorldSSP Friday Action Krummenacher
Randy Krummenacher

In fourth overall, Ayrton Badovini (Team Pedercini Racing) continued his good form at home and was top Kawasaki rider whilst being the first non-Yamaha rider too. Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) was in fifth place but suffered a crash in the closing stages. Sixth position belonged to Thomas Gradinger, who suffered a similar crash to Caricasulo at Turn 15. The Austrian rider, however, is in the mix for another podium challenge.

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday WorldSSP Friday Action Cluzel
Jules Cluzel

Up next, a brace of Italians; Massimo Roccoli (Team Rossa Corsa) was seventh on his wildcard appearance and ahead of regular rider, Raffaele De Rosa (MV AGUSTA Reparto Corse), who concluded the opening day in eighth overall, being pushed back at the end of FP2.

Japanese star Hikari Okubo (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) was once again a frontrunner and placed well within the top ten overall, in ninth, but complete FP2 in seventh. In combined times, the top ten was rounded out by Federico Fuligni (MV AGUSTA Reparto Corse) as he made a welcome reappearance in the top ten.

World Supersport Imola Friday Times

Pos No.  Rider Bike Combined Times Gap
1   F.  Caricasulo YZF R6 151.278 0.000
2   J.  Cluzel YZF R6 151.583 0.305
3   R. Krummenacher YZF R6 151.811 0.533
4   A. Badovini  ZX-6R 152.003 0.725
5   L.  Mahias  ZX-6R 152.058 0.780
6   T.  Gradinger YZF R6 152.158 0.880
7   M. Roccoli YZF R6 152.247 0.969
8   R. De Rosa F3 675 152.309 1.031
9   H. Okubo  ZX-6R 152.334 1.056
10   F.  Fuligni  F3 675 153.346 2.068
11   L.  Cresson YZF R6 153.367 2.089
12   G. Ruiu YZF R6 153.417 2.139
13   L.  Ottaviani YZF R6 153.425 2.147
14   H. Soomer CBR600RR 153.494 2.216
15   P.  Sebestyen CBR600RR 153.582 2.304
16   I.   Vinales YZF R6 153.732 2.454
17   C. Perolari YZF R6 153.842 2.564
18   J.  Danilo CBR600RR 154.028 2.750
19   M. Herrera YZF R6 154.075 2.797
20   J.  Van Sikkelerus CBR600RR 154.577 3.299
21   R. Hartog ZX-6R 154.638 3.360
22   G. Van Straalen ZX-6R 154.859 3.581
23   N. Calero ZX-6R 155.034 3.756
24 K. Smith  ZX-6R 155.067 3.789
25  A. Coppola CBR600RR 155.221 3.943
26  C. Stange CBR600RR 156.799 5.521
27  F.  Massei YZF R6 157.333 6.055
28  G. Matern  ZX-6R 205.423 14.145

World Supersport 300

WorldSSP300 was back on track at Imola for their 2019 campaign, returning after a four-week hiatus. From back-to-back rounds at a busy Aragon and a weather-affected Assen, the WorldSSP300 category now takes to the historic Imola circuit in Italy. After the first day of action, it was 2017 WorldSSP champion Marc Garcia (DS Junior Team) on top, but there’s plenty of time left for the others to catch up.

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday WorldSSP Friday Action Garcia
Marc Garcia

Having dipped below the existing lap record in FP2, Group A were once again dominant in the leading positions on combined times. Marc Garcia’s time of 2’07.028 placed him ahead of Mika Perez (Scuderia Maranga Racing) and Hugo De Cancellis (Team Trasimeno Yamaha). Garcia won at the Imola track back in 2017 and will be hoping that he can use this weekend as a platform to elevate himself up from a lowly 14th in the championship.

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday WorldSSP Friday Action De Cancellis
Hugo De Cancellis

Fourth on the time sheets was Galang Hendra Pratama (Semakin Di Depan Biblion Motoxracing), who led for the majority of the session. The Indonesian rider was 0.442s from the top time by Garcia.

In fifth place was the first of the Group B entrants, with Bruno Ieraci (Kawasaki GP Project) continuing his impressive form on from Assen. Kevin Sabatucci (Team Trasimeno Yamaha) made it a 1-2 in Group B for Italy and finished sixth overall, making for an exciting prospect for the rest of the weekend.

WSBK Rnd Imola Friday WorldSSP Friday Action Perez
Mika Perez

World Supersport 300 Friday Times

Source: MCNews.com.au

Can anyone break Bautista’s winning streak? | WSBK to Imola

2019 World Superbike

WSBK heads to Imola for Round Five

World Superbikes now heads to the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari di Imola with Alvaro Bautista’s domination continuing, and defending World Champion Jonathan Rea 53-points in arrears.

Even at Assen, a circuit which many had pencilled in as a potential bogey circuit for the Ducati V4 R, Álvaro Bautista was able to impose his authority on the rest of the field – albeit with his leading margin severely abbreviated.

The Spaniard’s star is burning brighter and brighter, yet every round the spotlight is at a bigger risk of veering towards someone else. Bautista knew each one of the four opening tracks inside-out before even stepping onboard the V4 R; that’s not the case with Imola.

WSBK Rnd Assen Sun Alvaro Bautista
Alvaro Bautista has scored 11 race wins in a row!

Álvaro Bautista

“Two weeks ago I had the chance to test at Imola, a circuit where I’ve never raced before. It was very useful because now I have a few more markers for the weekend race. The track is a bit ‘old style’: it’s very narrow, with a lot of hard braking points, but it’s got a nice combination of fast corners. All things considered, it’s a fun circuit, even though I still have to interpret the lines better. It’ll surely be a great weekend and we hope to arrive at the same competitive level we’ve had so far. For the Aruba team’s and the Ducati factory’s home race, we absolutely want to be and must be on the top of our form!”

WSBK Rnd Assen Sun Alvaro Bautista
Alvaro Bautista

Even with a semi-rained out, one-day test behind him, the 34-year-old will for once be at a disadvantage in terms of experience – although, to be fair, he’ll be the only one inside the Borgo Panigale squad with that issue. The Pirelli Italian Round is a home tie for Ducati and the crowd will be hot for the red machines. Despite having to concede two wins to Kawasaki last year, Ducati is still the most successful manufacturer around their home track. Ducati have won here 17 times, more than all their rivals combined, 14 (Honda 7; Kawasaki 6; Aprilia 1).

Chaz Davies, a four-time winner at the Autodromo, knows the stage better than most and will aim to gain the upper hand on his teammate for the first time this year.

Chaz Davies

“I’m looking forward to Imola, it’s the home race for the Aruba team and for Ducati. We’ve had two quite good weekends in succession now, so hopefully we can put together the best of what we learned there and in testing to put on a good race. I’m quite optimistic, because I’m starting to have a good feeling now on the bike. Historically Imola’s been a good track for me, it suits me and my style but we can’t rely on that because we need to keep working on our weaknesses with the Panigale V4 R. The people here are always so enthusiastic and winning at Imola is like nowhere else so that’s the objective this weekend.”

WSBK Rnd Assen Sun Chaz Davies
Chaz Davies

A win for either man would serve as vindication for Ducati after their private test ten days ago, but the word on Kawasaki’s mind might well be vendetta. The last time the Japanese manufacturer failed to win a race inside the opening four rounds was 2011, in the pre-Provec Racing era; similarly, Jonathan Rea had not left four consecutive rounds empty-handed since his Honda days.

These are uncharted waters for the men in green, and the visit to their rival’s playfield could not come at a more frustrating time – yet hopes are still high for the first of two Italian meetings. This is after all, the first event which the Northern Irishman outright dominated last year, not to mention his consecutive demolition jobs in 2014 and 2015. Imola was where it all clicked for Rea in 2018 – could it be a turning point in 2019?

WSBK Rnd Assen Day Rea
Jonathan Rea

Jonathan Rea

“I had a great few weeks’ rest at home, and I am re-charged and ready to attack this mid-part of the season. After four rounds we have understood and evaluated where we are and where we need to improve. So we approach Imola trying to make another step in terms of my riding and also the performance of the bike. The circuit is incredible and I love racing at Imola, because it is steeped in history and from a rider’s point of view it is a fun track to ride. It is very unique with a lot of undulations and you really need to feel at one with your bike to push on the limit there. I am very excited for FP1 just to understand our performance, if we can be competitive, which I am sure we can be. I will work with my team throughout Friday to give us a bike to compete. I see Imola as a track where we can be really competitive and last year we had a great season, so I feel like it is the time in my season where we can try to change the momentum of the championship. Imola gives us a good opportunity to do that.”

WorldSBK Rnd Aragon Sun Rea GB
Jonathan Rea

Keeping up with the questions: which Yamaha rider will be the one to step up on this occasion? Marco Melandri got the blue brand’s first podium in Australia, followed by a triplet of thirds for Alex Lowes in Thailand.

Marco Melandri

“I’m really looking forward to returning to Imola, as it’s one of the most beautiful tracks we race at during the season. It’s a very technical track, very difficult actually, but with the long break after Assen we’ve had a chance to think about how we can improve, so I’m sure in Imola this weekend we will start from a different level compared to the previous few races.”

WorldSBK Rnd Aragon Sun Marco Melandri
Marco Melandri

Then, MotorLand Aragon witnessed an astonishing qualifying performance by Sandro Cortese, before Michael van der Mark starred in a heroic homecoming at Assen just seven days later.

Michael van der Mark

“We’ve had quite a long break since the last round in Assen, so I can’t wait to race again this weekend. Imola is a circuit with different characteristics again and, although the results in the past weren’t all that great, we made a big step forward last year in Race 2. With that in mind, and with the improvements we’ve made to the bike this season already, I think we can be competitive at this circuit. The weekend can’t come quick enough for me!”

WSBK Rnd Assen Day VanDerMark
Michael van der Mark – Assen 2019

There’s no shortage of YZF-R1 riders with their eyes on the brass ring – the only doubt is whether (or rather, when) one of the four can move past the support cast and claim that leading role. The Pata Yamaha pair have had the early edge in 2019; conversely, Melandri is the only one with podium experience at Imola.

WSBK Rnd Assen Sun Tom Sykes
Tom Sykes

Piano piano, si arriva lontano. While this Italian idiom – roughly translated as “slow and steady wins the race” – may not be a natural fit for the sport, it does do a good job at explaining the mentality behind the early development of the BMW S1000 RR. Upgrades have slowly streamed in from one round to another, and correspondingly results for both Tom Sykes and Markus Reiterberger have been on a steady rise. The German manufacturer is playing the long game for its full factory return to WorldSBK and each race is a new test of the S1000 RR’s potential. It will be interesting to see what they can bring to the table for Round Five.

WSBK Rnd Phillip Island Markus Reiterberger
Markus Reiterberger

The Moriwaki Althea Honda Team found itself in a similar situation at this season’s start, albeit without new machinery; however, results have not been quite as encouraging yet. With the Japanese manufacturer putting its full support behind the project, it shouldn’t be long before we see the duo of Leon Camier – third at Imola back in 2011 – and Ryuichi Kiyonari higher up the grid. It will be something of a home race for the squad with the Althea headquarters located just north of Rome, around three-hundreds kilometers from the historic track.

Leon Camier is looking forward to racing at a track he loves and, together with teammate Ryuichi Kiyonari, is counting on the southern European location for stable and hopefully warm weather after the havoc caused by the freezing and extremely variable conditions in Assen four weeks ago.

Leon Camier

“I love Imola, it’s a really good track and I enjoy riding there. Having said that, I expect it to be tough to be honest. The layout is very physical and there are a lot of details we need to get right in terms of the bike’s setup. I think it will be a challenging weekend for us, but I’m definitely looking forward to it. Hopefully the weather will be warmer than Assen and allow us to take advantage of every session to prepare for the races. We’ll try our best and will see what happens.”

WSBK Rnd Assen Sun Leon Camier
Leon Camier

AEST Time Schedule

Source: MCNews.com.au