The reigning world champion Tom Sykes (Kawasaki), after an uncertain start to the season in the Australian weekend, is an undisputed star in the Spanish round of the World Superbike Championship, held this weekend at the Motorland Aragon circuit.
After getting the top spot on the grid, the Kawasaki rider reached the top of podium in both races. In the first one, from the start, the British rider was at the head of the race and, after just a few laps, ahead of the rest of the front group. Davide Giugliano (Ducati) and Loris Baz (Kawasaki) were fighting for the second position, chased by Jonathan Rea (Honda). The Italian passed aggressively on the French rider in the fourth lap but lost this position after half the race was completed.
The two Aprilia riders, Marco Melandri and Silvan Guintoli, with Chaz Davies (Ducati), were fighting for fifth place, while Eugene Laverty (Suzuki) was back in twelfth at one stage. Melandri lost his positions, increasing his lap time gradually increasing. Davide Giugliano tried to overtaking Rea in the last lap at the hairpin, just before the straight but make a mistake slipping into the ground. Quickly gets up again, resuming the race and managed to pass under the checkered flag in eighth position.
In the second race, Marco Melandri, after a quite slow start, improved his lap times close to Sykes. The poleman is unable to detach his team-mate Baz, who improves round by round. Alex Lowes (Suzuki) and Davies are out the race after only a few rounds. Rea and Melandri had a long fight for the third position and, in the final laps the Aprilia rider from Romagna reached the head of the race and the second position by taking advantage of an internal Kawasaki struggle.
Shortly before the final pass under the checkered flag, Melandri attempts a spectacular overtaking to win the first position, but only get the last step of the podium, behind Loris Baz.
At the end of the second weekend of the championship race is led by Sykes with 75 points, followed by Baz (71) and Guintoli (64), the first Italian Marco Melandri is in fourth place in the standings (49).
Now Superbike takes a week off but gets back to work again on April 26 and 27 at the Dutch track of Assen.
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The Dutch leg of the World Superbike Championship has seen as a protagonist uncertain and variable weather.
Race one started with the track damp from the night rain, but just variable sky, so much that riders occurred on the grid with slick tires. Very good start for Baz (Kawasaki) from the first grid position, but already at the first corner Guintoli (Aprilia) joins him and attain the head of the race, followed by Rea (Honda) and Sykes (Kawasaki). Giugliano (Ducati) falls on the first lap, while Melandri (Aprilia) is struggling with Davies (Ducati) and Elias (Aprilia) for the fifth position. At the seventeenth lap, with the world champion who has now almost catched the French rider of, it breaks the EBR engine of May, dropping oil on the track, forcing the race direction to stop the competition. Race ends with the victory of Guintoli, second Sykes in third place Rea ahead Baz, followed Elias, Melandri, Davies, Haslam, Canepa and Lowes.
At the start, the second race was declared dry, leaving the possibility of a pit stop to change tires, as the threatening sky suggest. Race delayed a few minutes, some drivers stopped in box and changed rain tires. The race was declared wet and it will run 15 laps instead of 21, when just before the reopening of the pit lane, the rain literally flooded the track. On the fourth lap, whith hint from the French rider of Aprilia, Giuntoli, that leaded of the race with a large detachment from the pursuers, the race was again interrupted with red flag, for the harsh conditions of the track due to the rain.
The race was shortened again to just ten laps. At the start Sykes immediately took the lead, followed by Rea and Melandri. Before the end of the first lap Rea is first, immediately takes off and win the race. Guintoli falls in the second pass at the hairpin, Lowes and Giugliano arrive at the second and third place.
Next appointment in two weeks at the Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola.
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The world of the derived series stops off at Imola for the fourth round of the season. On the famous circuit dedicated to Enzo e Dino Ferrari, the Irish Honda rider, Jonathan Rea, has been the absolute ruler of the whole weekend. After winning the Superpole on Saturday, leaving the second box on the grid at Guintoli (Aprilia ) and the third in Giugliano (Ducati), made of double victories in both races of the day.
In race one Rea immediately took off, Davies (Ducati) and Sykes (kawasaki) were fighting for few laps for the second position. Melandri (Aprilia), after a good start, lost positions up to be seventh at the seventh lap, while Giugliano slips after passing the finish line for the thirteenth time and so be out of the race. The first race on Sunday ends with Rea on the top step of the podium, followed by Davies and Sykes, Baz (Kawasaki), Guitoli, Melandri sixth. Even at the start of race two Rea stood out to a great start, very good first round also for Giugliano and Melandri. Haslam (Honda) is out of contention for the top spots for an off-track at the third lap, while Melandri lost the second position. Davies, who started sixth, after a great race comeback, catches the second place on the sixteenth lap, while Guintoli, Sykes, Giugliano and Baz, were fighting until the checkered flag.
Race two sees Rea as winner, in second place Davies and on the lowest rung of the podium the the French rider Guintoli. The reigning world champion, Tom Sykes, only fifth. The main focus of this weekend was also the Ducati, which rises twice on the second step of the podium. Best result obtained to date from the red Ducati.
The next race is in two weeks at the English circuit of Donington.
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The world of the derived series arrives in the cold and wet England, where, under a shower, Davide Giugliano (Ducati) won the Superpole, the second of his career. Second place on the grid for Haslam (Honda), well Melandri (Aprilia) who won third place in the front row. Struggling to find the right feeling and tuning for Superpole the reigning world champion Tom Sykes (Kawasaki ), seventh, ahead of championship leader Rea (Honda).
In race one, after a good start of Melandri and Haslam, is Guintoli (Aprilia) who takes the lead, but from the first curve begins a duel with the Italian rider. Lowes (Suzuki) and Baz (Kawasaki) advance, while Giugliano sixth and tenth Sykes. At the seventh lap Baz is already in the lead , followed by Lowes, the Aprilia is losin ground while Sykes recovers positions, driving even half a second below the times of the first. On the sixteenth lap Davide Giugliano falls and is out of the race, while the next round the world champion in office is located behind Baz, his teammate now in the lead. With three laps from the end of the first heats of the English round, Sykes began to attack Baz, who tries to resist. But the champion wins again today, in front of Baz, Lowes and Melandri.
Race two begins with a great start of the Aprilia, Guintoli and Melandri, followed by Lowes, Giugliano and Haslam . On lap nine Lowes buffers Melandri, both fall, but rejoin the race. Guintoli, Baz and Sykes play the first three positions, Giugliano pursues. There are no big surprises on the second and final race of the day ended with Sykes in the lead, followed by Baz ,Guintoli, Giugliano, Davies ( Ducati) and Rea. With this double triumph the world champion, who is not lacking in English on the podium in the last three seasons, returns to the top of the drivers' standings.
Away to the Asian world of the derived series that will run for the first time in two weeks on the Sepang circuit in Malaysia.
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First double of his career and first assertion riding the Aprilia for Marco Melandri who, at the Sepang circuit, managed to bend twice teammate Sylvain Guintoli, author of the best time in Superpole. In both races Melandri has been forced to recover, starting from the second row, and once reached the French Guintoli, had to fight with the companion box until the last corner to be able to bring home the two deserved victories. Marco Melandri has thus the double seal on the Malaysian circuit, which for the first time in its history has hosted the World Superbike Championship.
The races at Sepang have been very hard fought and full of twists. The first took place immediately at the start of race 1 when Loris Baz crashed overwhelming Alex Lowes and world champion Tom Sykes, so that he could not take points in the first half. Absent these three characters, the third step of the podium place went to Eugene Laverty, who after winning race 1 in Aystralia was left dry by important results.
The fall of race 1 was not painless for Tom Sykes, who injured his right hand, but still managed to take part in race 2. World champion gritted his teeth and, while the two official Aprilia battling for the win , he was able to bring home a precious third place that allowed him to retain the leadership of the championship. Sykes, in fact, is always at the top of the standings with 13 points on Guintoli, 22 Rea, difficulty in Malaysia but the author of a great comeback in Race 1, 31 and 54 of Baz and Melandri. In Sepang, while Honda was struggling due to the lack of grip of the asphalt, the Ducati behaved quite well. Considering the long straights of the Malaysian track and more than 40 degrees of fever Davide Giugliano, the Ducati factory team brought home a fourth and eighth place with the Welshman Chaz Davies. The main focus, especially in Race 2, Toni Elias, fifth and fourth under the checkered flag.
Among the EVO, David Salom victory in Race 1, the first at the start of the race and at the finish ninth overall and Leon Camier in race 2, twelfth overall.
For the next round, the seventh of the season, the Superbike returns to Italy, more precisely in Misano Adriatico, where he will return to racing after a year off. The event is scheduled for the weekend of July 22.
The World Superbike returns to Italy for the seventh race of the season, at the circuit of Misano Adriatico dedicated to the rider Marco Simoncelli.
The racing weekend opened with a Superpole won by British Kawasaki rider, Tom Sykes, who has also improved the lap record of the track with the production-based series, which resisted from 2010 obtained by two-time world champion, the Australian Troy Corser. The first three places on the grid are occupied by Tom Sykes, championship leader, Davide Giugliano (Ducati) and Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia).
At the start of the first Sunday race Elias (Aprilia), who started from sixth position, takes the lead, followed by Sykes, Giugliano and Guintoli, while Melandri (Aprilia) did immediately an error. But already on the second lap the positions vary, Sykes exceeds Elias and Guintoli goes along and Baz (Kawasaki) passed him. At the second lap Baz is second, the two riders of Ducati have climbed Elias and Marco Melandri started the comeback. Shortly after the pilot from Ravenna exceeds the Aprilia team-mate, Guintoli, while Baz tries to get closer to the world champion which remains firmly at the head of the race. From half of the race, the Roman rider of Ducati, Giugliano, progressively slows down due to technical problems, losing positions, down till the eighth place. The first round of the day ended with a victory for Tom Sykes, followed by team mate Baz, third Melandri.
In race two Davide Giugliano jump in the place at the start, followed by Sykes, Baz and Melandri. But just one round later, Giugliano reached a penalty imposed by the race direction, drive-throught for jump start. Sykes dominated the race, chased by Baz, Melandri and Guintoli, while the rider of the Borgo Panigale is just twenty-first. After a long duel between Baz and Melandri for the second place, the transalpine rider get the second position, while Sykes was increasing his lead lap by lap, concluding by prancing winner at the finish line.
Next meeting in Portugal on the Algarve circuit in Portimao, and immediately following, the Superbike circus will continue to United States, in the direction of Laguna Seca, in the sunny California.
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Tom Sykes (Kawasaki) and Jonathan Rea (Honda) got one victory each in the two races of the Portuguese round of the championship of the derived of series. The eighth week of Superbike races starred, on a sunny saturday, Sykes (Ducati) superpose followed by Rea and Davies (Ducati).
On Sunday, at the start of race one, the sky was overcast but it was not raining. Rea had a very good start, who immediately places himself in first position, followed by Melandri (Aprilia), Sykes, Baz (Kawasaki), Davies (Ducati) and Guintoli (Aprilia). Sykes reduced the gap with Melandri and Rea and by the fifth lap he was in front and working to widen the distance between him and the persuers. In the middle of the race Baz exceeds Melandri who, in trouble, was in risk of being attacked by Rea. Sykes progressively increased his lead, while the two pursuing him were battling for the second place. A few laps to the end of the race Sykes forwent Guintoli, Melandri Baz, while started to rain on the circuit in Portugal. Kawasaki Englishman slows down and the competition for the victory seems to be opened again, but it only took him a couple of laps to get back on track and cross as first the finish line followed by Guintoli and his team-mate Baz.
Shortly before the afternoon competition it started raining at the Portimao circuit. Just before the start the race direction declares the race wet, 18 laps instead of 20. All the riders went out on track with rain tires. Rea had again a perfect start, followed by Sykes, Davies, Melandri, Guintoli and Baz. On the fourth lap the two drivers of Aprilia, Guintoli and Melandri exceed Davies, winning, respectively, the third and fourth provisional place. Haslam (Honda) and Giugliano (Ducati) hooked up Davies. The Aprilia closed the gap on the reigning world champion, Tom Sykes, while Haslam went straight out the track and Giugliano exceeds his teammate Davies. The eighth lap of race two Melandri and Guintoli passed Sykes, who was visibly slowed down by the rain, he was therefore passed to the next round by Davide Giugliano as well.
The two Aprilia riders tried to get close to Rea, but in the thirteenth lap Guintoli sliped and involvesed his teammate Melandri. Both Aprilia went to the ground, Guintoli was able to restarts while Melandri was forced to abandon the race. Rea is now chased by Giugliano, Sykes, Haslam and Davies. The British driver exceeded Haslam in the sixteenth lap, who suffered the attack of Baz as well. At the end the podium of race two there were Rea, Giugliano and Davies.
The next round will take place in the sunny Californian track at Laguna Seca.
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