Press releases from the World Superbike and World Supersport teams after qualifying at the Nurburgring on Saturday:
Nürburgring – Qualifying Practice 2 & Superpole.
Team BMW Motorrad Motorsport finishes this Saturday at the Nürburgring (GER) with mixed emotions. Factory rider, Leon Haslam (GBR), has a promising starting position for the tenth round of the 2011 FIM Superbike World Championship. He finished today's Superpole qualifying in seventh, and will start the team's home races from the second row. On the other hand, team mate, Troy Corser (AUS), missed out on the Superpole qualifying by just 0.019 seconds, so will be starting 17th. Ayrton Badovini (ITA) from the BMW Motorrad Italia SBK Team will start with his BMW S 1000 RR from 15th. His team mate James Toseland (GBR) qualified 18th.
Fastest lap Qualifying Practices: 1:55.887 min (P10) / Fastest lap FP: 1:56.181 min (P4) / Fastest lap Superpole 3: 1:55.887 min (P7)
"I am happy with the way everything has gone today. I managed to post my fastest lap time on race tyres, which is promising for the two races tomorrow. Sadly we don't seem to be able to extract the full potential from the qualifying tyres like the other guys, but we made it through to SP3 which was the main objective. For the races tomorrow I will be hoping for a good start and to push for the podium. I think Carlos Checa has good pace and will be hard to beat, but we can definitely challenge the others so I am looking forward to tomorrow."
Fastest lap Qualifying Practices: 1:56.401 min (P17) / Fastest lap FP: 1:56.593 min (P9)
"To miss out on Superpole is certainly frustrating. Yesterday we had a technical issue which really cost us a lot of track time, and since then we have been simply playing catch up. It is almost like we are a session behind everybody else, and I think that has cost us. But the issues we had were unforeseen and we couldn't do anything about that. We just need to make sure we work hard in the morning to finalise our set-up and race strategy, then definitely we can do something in the race. At the minute the weather forecast predicts rain, but either way if we get a good start and stay out of trouble we can challenge for the top ten."
Rainer Bäumel (Head of Race Operations):
"Leon and the team did a good job and deserved to get into Superpole 3. I think that it would have been difficult to qualify on the first row today. Therefore we are very happy with Leon's result, but at the same time we are sad that Troy missed the Superpole by only two hundreds of a second. That was a shame, but tomorrow we could see surprises because the forecast predicts rain. Then it more or less does not matter from which position you start, and I think that we are very well prepared for tomorrow, especially for wet conditions."
Miguel slashes lap times; Sam on front row
PARKALGAR HONDA'S Miguel Praia cut his lap times in final qualifying by more than 1.5seconds to move up to 11th on the grid for tomorrow's ninth round of the World Supersport Championship at the Nurburgring in Germany.
Parkalgar Honda racer Sam Lowes crashed in the morning practice and then crashed again early in the afternoon qualifying. He failed to improve his lap time but starts from the front row in fourth thanks to his speed yesterday. The race starts at 1330CET tomorrow, September 4th.
Miguel: "Considering we lost so much time in the middle of the session after I crashed, the third row is good for us. I think 11th is a decent starting position for the first slow corner and I may be able to make up some places quickly with a good start. I would like to get into the top six in the race and I think I have the bike and ability to achieve that. This is a really physical track but I am OK and I think at the end of the race my fitness will help me."
Sam: "I've been through the mill today. I crashed hard this morning and then again early in the afternoon. I need to take a step back and come with a different approach tomorrow. We know we have the speed and the ability to challenge at the front so I am looking forward to a good warm up and then a decent race."
Simon Buckmaster, Parkalgar Honda Team Manager: "Miguel has been improving all weekend, 11th is his best qualifying this year. He has put himself in a good position to challenge well inside the top 10.
"Sam crashed this morning. He slid off again this afternoon but has been checked out by the Clinica and we expect him to be back to form tomorrow for the race."
FABRIZIO ON NURBURGRING 4TH ROW
Team Suzuki Press Office - September 3.
Team Alstare Suzuki rider Michel Fabrizio had a crash at the start of Superpole 1 at the World Superbike 10th round at the Nurburgring; the resulting change in strategy leaving the young Italian chasing lap times on his spare bike.
He managed to recover well and get into Superpole 2, where he was able to use his favourite bike which had been repaired by the mechanics but he was unable to push as hard as he wanted because of chattering, and so failed to get into Superpole 3, ending with 12th position for tomorrow's grid.
Series leader Carlos Checa (Ducati) took Superpole - his fifth of the season - with Eugene Laverty (Yamaha) second, Max Biaggi (Aprilia) third and Marco Melandri (Yamaha) fourth
Michel Fabrizio - 12th, 1:56.177:
"Obviously I am disappointed how things worked out, because I expected to do much better. Probably the crash in Superpole ruined all our plans and we had to change our programme. I crashed in more or less the same place as yesterday and I am wondering if there is a bump on the track or something like that because both times I went down without any warning. I was unhurt in the crash and able to get my bike back to the pits and then jumped on to my spare bike and continue Superpole 1. I did enough to get into Superpole 2, where I used my number one bike again, because it's the bike I prefer - even though both bikes are set up more-or-less the same. But my favourite bike was not like it was before the crash and I experienced quite a bit of chatter and so I couldn't push as hard as I wanted to. It's a shame because I really felt that I could have been on the two front rows of the grid for tomorrow. Now I've got to make two good starts and work as hard as I can to have any chance of some good results."
A GREAT DAY FOR CHECA AND ALTHEA RACING; THE SQUAD SCORES ITS FIFTH POLE OF THE SEASON THIS AFTERNOON AT THE RING
Nürburg (Germany), Saturday 3rd September 2011: team Althea Racing and rider Carlos Checa enjoyed an "almost perfect" day at the Nürburgring today, where the team is taking part in the tenth round of the World Superbike Championship. Checa was the fastest rider in qualifying, the fastest in each of the three Superpoles and even beat the lap record in the process, recording a best time of 1m54.144 in the final phase!
Temperate conditions (air temperature 25C, track 39C) for this morning's SBK qualifying session at the Nürburgring. Carlos did not waste any time and after the first few laps he had already improved on his best time set yesterday afternoon. He continued to work hard throughout the 45-minute session and during his final exit he was able to further improve his lap time, recording the fastest lap seen so far this weekend, an extremely quick 1m55.030. With this very impressive lap time, the Althea rider qualified in first position for this afternoon's Superpole, with four tenths of a second on second placed Laverty.
Superpole 1: heading out with race rubber on what was now a hotter track compared to the morning's session, Checa made only one lap but this lap (1m54.641) remained the overall fastest of the session and he held his place at the top of the timesheets until the session's end.
Superpole 2: once again Althea Racing's flagbearer needed to make only one lap of the track. Immediately registering a 1m54.709, Checa was able to return to the garage and wait out the rest of the session. He closed this second phase in first position.
Superpole 3: the third phase was a carbon copy of the first two. Carlos went straight out, completed one clean lap, and beat the lap record by over four tenths in the process. His fastest lap time, 1m54.144, saw him qualify comfortably in pole position for tomorrow's races. This is the fifth time this season that the Spaniard will take first position on the grid.
"Yesterday we learned a lot and the changes we made between yesterday and today's sessions brought the right results. We're really happy with the work completed, we've improved the bike and the lap times have come. In the first Superpole phase I was having a little difficulty but the second and third sessions went better and I was able to take pole. The Nürburgring is one of those tracks where it's difficult to make passes so it's certainly an advantage to start from the front here. Tomorrow I will be aiming to make the best possible start and do all I can to fight for the win; I think we'll see two really exciting races."
Checa the headline act in Tissot-Superpole at the Ring
Nürburgring (Germany), Saturday 3 September 2011 – Carlos Checa (Althea Racing Ducati) set a new Nürburgring best lap of 1 minute 54.144 seconds early in the final Tissot-Superpole session to claim his fifth top starting position this year. Behind, Eugene Laverty (Yamaha World Superbike Team), Max Biaggi (Aprilia Alitalia) and Marco Melandri (Yamaha World Superbike Team) completed the front row, with Biaggi particularly impressive as he was riding with an broken bone in his injured left foot.
Carlos Checa: "It is a great day. I think we were able to interpret the bike well and from yesterday we made some changes and the result is the way it is. Even from the first qualifying to the second one we made one step in front. I am quite satisfied and I think we have brought the bike and the tyres to a great limit. Not perfect, because that is always difficult to say that it is perfect, but close."
Eugene Laverty: "I am confident riding here and it is my first time here in Superbike. I am really enjoying the R1 and I was expecting the bike to be more difficult around at this circuit, but it is riding quite well and we can see Marco is there as well. I think we can be strong tomorrow but we must hope for dry weather, as there are rumours of rain which may upset things a little. The most important thing is that we are starting from the front row."
Max Biaggi: "My position on the grid is actually not bad at all. I'm worried however about how many laps I can last in the race, my injured foot is very painful and the situation got worse lap after lap. Now I have difficulty in changing gear and that doesn't make me very optimistic. Now we will just have to wait until tomorrow morning".
Marco Melandri: "I am very happy to be on the front row because it is my first time on this track and it is pretty difficult. I was worried because I saw many difficult corners and bumps, so I was wondering about the weather too. My Yamaha was working well and the team made a good job so I could find a better line, lap-by-lap. I was hoping to be faster in Superpole three but in the second lap I did not get the chance to improve a lot."
Proven winner at this track Noriyuki Haga (Pata Racing Aprilia) was fifth while Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team Superbike) once more showed good pre-race pace to claim sixth place on the grid. Leon Haslam (BMW Motorrad Motorsport) squeezed out Sylvain Guintoli (Effenbert Liberty Racing Ducati) for seventh.
Comeback rider Jonathan Rea scored ninth in Superpole on his Castrol Honda, just missing the final session but heading up row three of the grid. Mark Aitchison (Pedercini Team Kawasaki) secured a start in Superpole two and posted 11th place, one behind Effenbert Liberty Racing Ducati rider Jakub Smrz. The final rider after Superpole two was Michel Fabrizio (Suzuki Alstare), in 12th.
Leon Camier, Biaggi's team-mate, fought his way to 13th, one place up on Ducati privateer Maxime Berger (Supersonic Racing Team). Ayrton Badovini (BMW Motorrad Italia SBK) and Joan Lascorz (Kawasaki Racing Team) rounded out the top 16 riders who made it into Tissot-Superpole.
Times: 1. Checa C. (ESP) Ducati 1098R 1'54.144; 2. Laverty E. (IRL) Yamaha YZF R1 1'54.512; 3. Biaggi M. (ITA) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'54.743; 4. Melandri M. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R1 1'54.818; 5. Haga N. (JPN) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'55.113; 6. Sykes T. (GBR) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'55.223; 7. Haslam L. (GBR) BMW S1000 RR 1'55.237; 8. Guintoli S. (FRA) Ducati 1098R 1'55.249; 9. Rea J. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 1'55.321; 10. Smrz J. (CZE) Ducati 1098R 1'55.598; 11. Aitchison M. (AUS) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'55.625; 12. Fabrizio M. (ITA) Suzuki GSX-R1000 1'56.177; 3. Camier L. (GBR) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'55.633; 14. Berger M. (FRA) Ducati 1098R 1'55.811; 15. Badovini A. (ITA) BMW S1000 RR 1'56.101; 16. Lascorz J. (ESP) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'56.162; etc.
Just under a tenth of a second separated points leader Chaz Davies (Yamaha ParkinGO) from poleman Fabien Foret (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda) who will start from the front slot for the second time this season. The Frenchman set a time of 1 minute 59.298 seconds, which was more than one second slower than Cal Crutchlow's 2010 best lap.
The front row is completed by two fellow Brits Gino Rea (Step Racing Team Honda) and Sam Lowes (Parkalgar Honda). Row 2 contains two Italians, with Massimo Roccoli (Lorenzini by Leoni Kawasaki) ahead of Luca Scassa (Yamaha ParkinGO), together with James Ellison (Bodganka PTR Honda) and David Salom (Kawasaki Motocard.com).
Times: 1. Foret F. (FRA) Honda CBR600RR 1'59.258; 2. Davies C. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R6 1'59.334; 3. Rea G. (GBR) Honda CBR600RR 1'59.738; 4. Lowes S. (GBR) Honda CBR600RR 1'59.771; 5. Ellison J. (GBR) Honda CBR600RR 1'59.785; 6. Roccoli M. (ITA) Kawasaki ZX-6R 1'59.905; 7. Scassa L. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R6 1'59.929; 8. Salom D. (ESP) Kawasaki ZX-6R 2'00.250; etc.
Two Ducatis and two BMWs once again make up the front row of the grid for the Superstock 1000 race tomorrow morning, with the quickest time going to Althea Racing man Davide Giugliano. The Italian set a 1 minute 58.763 seconds lap to head off the challenge of Sylvain Barrier (BMW Motorrad Italia Superstock), Silverstone winner Danilo Petrucci (Barni Racing Team Ducati) and Lorenzo Zanetti (BMW Motorrad Italia Superstock).
The talented young German Markus Reiterberger (Garnier Alpha Racing Team BMW) continued his learning curve with fifth slot on the grid, followed by three more Italians: Lorenzo Baroni (Althea Racing Ducati), Andrea Antonelli (Lorini Honda) and Niccolò Canepa (Lazio MotorSport Ducati).
Times: 1. Giugliano D. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1'58.763; 2. Barrier S. (FRA) BMW S1000 RR 1'59.259; 3. Petrucci D. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1'59.268; 4. Zanetti L. (ITA) BMW S1000 RR 1'59.812; 5. Reiterberger M. (GER) BMW S1000 RR 1'59.933; 6. Baroni L. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 2'00.219; 7. Antonelli A. (ITA) Honda CBR1000RR 2'00.424; 8.Canepa N. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 2'00.448; etc.
Superstock 600 – Race
The win in the seventh round of the European Superstock 600 Championship went to Dutchman Michael Van der Mark (Ten Kate Junior Team Honda) who became the first rider this year to double up at the top. Australian Jed Metcher finished second for the MTM-RT Motorsports Yamaha team and team-mate Gauthier Duwelz of Belgium third. Denmark's Alex Schacht (Schacht Racing Honda) was next up, while the top Italian at the flag was Daniele Beretta (Trasimeno Yamaha), who finished fifth.
Metcher now moves into the lead of the championship with 101 points, while Romain Lanusse (MRS Yamaha Racing France), who retired, stays on the 94 mark. Dino Lombardi (Martini Corse Yamaha) is third equal on points with Joshua Day (Revolution Racedays Kawasaki), who crashed out.
Results: 1. Vd Mark M. (NED) Honda CBR600RR 20'40.709 (149,054 kph); 2. Metcher J. (AUS) Yamaha YZF R6 3.136; 3. Duwelz G. (BEL) Yamaha YZF R6 3.569; 4. Schacht A. (DEN) Honda CBR600RR 5.581; 5. Beretta D. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R6 8.515; 6. Covena T. (NED) Yamaha YZF R6 9.092; 7. Russo R. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R6 12.358; 8. Elliott J. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R6 16.065; etc.
Points (after 7 of 10 rounds): 1. Metcher 101; 2. Lanusse 94; 3. Day 77; 4. Lombardi 77; 5. Vd Mark 76; 6. Duwelz 67; 7. Russo 63; 8. Egea 39; etc.
Season's best for confident Ellison
BOGDANKA PTR HONDA's James Ellison will start tomorrow's round nine of the World Supersport Championship at the Nurburgring from fifth position after improving his yesterday's time by more than a second and claiming his season's best qualifying result.
His Polish teammate Pawel Szkopek qualified in 23rd position after going eight tenths faster than on Friday and is looking forward to making another step tomorrow. The World Supersport race at the Nurburgring in Germany will start at 1:30 CET on Sunday.
James Ellison: "The changes that the team made to the bike over the summer break made it feel just like at the start of the season at Phillip Island and Donington Park, and made me feel really confident. It allowed me to put the team where we should be. I was hoping for a front row but I'm still confident and I'm really looking forward to the race. We've put a lot of fast laps together and I know we'll have a good race."
Pawel Szkopek: "Just as expected, the setup improvements after yesterday allowed me to go eight tenths faster so I'm quite pleased. Nurburgring is a fast circuit. I like it a lot but still had very little time to get to know it well. I was taking it rather steady today not to make any mistakes before the race but we'll be trying something new in the warm-up and I'm looking forward to improving my position tomorrow."
Simon Buckmaster: "James is riding consistently and running a good pace. It is his best qualifying this year and he just missed out on a front row start. He is right in there to fight for a podium finish tomorrow.
"Pawel is taking a professional and measured approach to this new circuit and I think he'll improve again in the race and there is a strong possibility he will score points."
Foret grabs Nurburgring pole
Fabien Foret will start tomorrow's ninth round World Supersport championship race at Nurburgring in Germany from pole position after setting the fastest time in this afternoon's final qualifying session.
Foret will be joined on the front row by series leader, Chaz Davies, from fellow Honda riders Gino Rea and Sam Lowes. Meanwhile, Foret's Hannspree Ten Kate Honda team-mate, Florian Marino, who was tenth fastest today, will start from the third row.
Foret left it late in the session to set his fast lap around the 5.137km Nurburgring circuit, but the Frenchman was delighted to secure his second pole position as he bids to close down Davies's lead in tomorrow's 19-lap race.
Fabien Foret – P1 1m59.258s
I'm very happy because we tried a small change earlier, but it didn't work! I came back in and we changed again and the bike felt good. I came back and said I was happy and the guys put a fresh tyre in. Luckily I had a clean, clear lap and it was great! It didn't want to wait around so I stayed out and saw plus 0.5 on my board which gave me a great motivation. We're ready for the race tomorrow but I expect a typically tough Supersport race with Davies, Rea and the others. We'll see what happens tomorrow, though, because that's another day. I'm also thinking about my normal mechanic, Michel, who is in some pain with his neck at the moment, so we all wish him well.
Florian Marino – P10 2m00.407s
I'm very disappointed because we still didn't find a solution. I also tried a lot of different lines to see if that helped, but there was no improvement. The bike still feels heavy to steer and it's sliding a lot at the rear. We'll look at things tonight and see where we can change for tomorrow. I'll try to make up some places a t the start and see what happens in the race.
Ronald ten Kate – team manager
We're all delighted that Fabien pulled that one out of the bag this afternoon after some problems with track time and set up yesterday, which was not helped by a small crash in practice this morning. Compliments to his whole crew for helping him to that pole position. Florian still needs some changes to get him comfortable on the bike but his guys will work hard on that tonight to give a bike he can race with tomorrow.
Yamaha WSB Team Shine at The Ring to Secure Front Row Starts on Tomorrow's Grid
Yamaha World Superbike riders, Eugene Laverty and Marco Melandri delivered impressive performances today to secure two front row starts ahead of tomorrow's races on the demanding German circuit at the Nurburgring. The Yamaha riders were on top form, being the strongest team performers throughout the qualifying day, confirming the current leading status for Yamaha on the WSB Team standing.
Laverty and Melandri completed the afternoon's knockout Superpole sessions in second and fourth place respectively. Both Yamaha riders sailed through the first Superpole, comfortably qualifying for the second heat of the day with Laverty in second place and his team-mate in fifth having recorded an impressive high speed of 282.7 km/h. The Yamaha riders were on equally impressive form in the second heat with Laverty shooting straight into the lead while his Italian team-mate was just behind in second place before Checa stole the top position by just 0.016. Using the last set of qualifiers Laverty and Melandri proceeded to complete the third and final session in second and fourth place, guaranteeing a front row start for tomorrow's races. As the typically wet German weather is forecast to make a come-back tomorrow, the Yamaha WSB riders are confident they can make the most of the front row advantage to get ahead of their competitors in what could prove to be a challenging race.
Splendid sunshine over the Eifel mountains this morning provided a picturesque setting for the Yamaha riders to work through various potential race set-ups on their R1 machines. Eugene Laverty was quick off the mark in this morning's second qualifying session, storming straight to the top of the time sheets, a position he maintained until the very end of the session before being bumped to second by Carlos Checa on the last lap. Team-mate Melandri concentrated on further improving from yesterday's progress in search of a suitable race set up and qualified for the Superpole heats in 6th place.
Yamaha World Superbike Team, 2nd - 1'54.512
"I'm very satisfied with today's result. I usually spend the few sessions working on chassis set ups but this weekend I had a good feeling from the beginning and was up there in the time sheets since yesterday, so that's a great start for me and hopefully I can keep it up tomorrow. Carlos was that bit stronger today and he'll be the guy to catch in tomorrow's races. It won't be easy but I'll give it my best shot. It's important to be starting on the front row especially considering we don't know what to expect with the weather. As we can see, also with Marco's front row position, the Yamaha is working well once again on this track so I'm confident we can do two good races tomorrow. I'm aiming for two podiums finishes!"
Yamaha World Superbike Team, 4th - 1'54.818
"It wasn't an easy qualifying day but I'm really pleased as I reached my highest objective which was to be on the front row for tomorrow's races. I really hope the weather will be good and it won't rain. That will make a huge difference as we spent today working on a suitable race set up. We haven't decided what tyres to use so we need to work on that in the morning. Rain will make things very difficult, the few laps we did on wets yesterday was not easy. It's an enjoyable track but quite difficult, especially the first corner which is particularly demanding."
Andrea Dosoli - Yamaha World Superbike Team Manager
"Today was a very positive second qualifying day. To have both riders starting from the front row tomorrow is very important. Marco, Eugene and their teams worked hard throughout the day. In Eugene's case, they worked on improving the bike handling in order to be able to make up time he was losing in certain areas of the track. Marco gained more confidence in the afternoon's free practice. He has made progress since yesterday and we are confident ahead of tomorrow's races.If the weather forecast is true and it rains tomorrow it will definitely change everything so it's important that the riders can take advantage of being on the front row."
Impressive Second Qualifying for Yamaha ParkinGO Team
Yamaha ParkinGO riders Chaz Davies and Luca Scassa were on top form today in the glorious sunshine at the Nurburgring to complete the second qualifying session in second and seventh places respectively.
Both Yamaha WSS riders took up where they left off yesterday and continued to make constant progress, working through various settings on their powerful R6 machines, in search of the perfect set up ahead of tomorrow's race day at the German circuit. Chaz Davies made the most of the day to get more familiar with the track while team-mate Luca Scassa made some minor adjustments to the electronics of his machine in search of a little extra speed.
Welshman, Chaz Davies worked on his race pace in the second qualifying session this afternoon. Confident with the consistent lap times, he proceeded to produce a faster lap time towards at the final stages of the session to secure second position on the front row of tomorrow's grid. Scassa was on equally impressive form this afternoon. Despite having swapped to a softer tyre in the dying minutes, the Italian was unable to set a flying lap due to getting caught up in traffic and was forced to settle for seventh place.
Yamaha ParkinGO Team, 2nd - 1'59.334
"I'm happy with today's result. The bike is working very well and we haven't had to change much, which is great. It seems to be going smoothly, similar to at Monza. I did a few consistent laps and felt good overall so I will leave the bike untouched and see again tomorrow. I'm a little concerned about the weather. I lost a lot of time on the only wet session yesterday, so I hope the rain holds off. I'm confident in general and hope to be back on a winner again in tomorrow's race."
Yamaha parkinGO Team, 7th - 1'59.929
"It didn't go too bad today but I expected to do a bit better. I put in a soft tyre towards the end of the session in order to produce a flying lap but I caught up in traffic and was unable to improve my times. That was disappointing as I had hoped to be on the front row. I have a good feeling with the bike, even on today's hot track temperatures, which has been an issue on some tracks this season. The weather is due to change for tomorrow but I'm not too concerned, I'm confident I can do well anyway."