Press releases from the World Superbike and World Supersport teams, as well as the EJC, after qualfying on Saturday at Jerez:
Fores and Team SBK Ducati Alstare reach the final phase of today’s Superpole at Jerez
Jerez (Spain), Saturday 19 October 2013: the fourteenth and final Superpole of the 2013 season took place this afternoon at Jerez and team SBK Ducati Alstare riders Xavi Fores and Ayrton Badovini qualified in eighth and thirteenth position respectively for tomorrow’s races.
During second qualifying, that took place in dry conditions (air temperature 21°C, track 21°C), both Ayrton and Xavi were able to improve on yesterday afternoon’s performance. The Spanish rider recorded a best time of 1’42.6, qualifying for the Superpole in eleventh place, while Ayrton dropped his best time set yesterday by seven tenths of a second, to record the same best time as his teammate, placing twelfth as a result.
Superpole 1 – riders made the most of dry and sunny conditions for the final Superpole of the season (air temperature 25°C, track 35°C). In this first phase, both Ayrton and Xavi made a first exit on race rubber and then another with the first of two available qualifying tyres. Xavi was able to record a very fast time (1’42.0) thanks to which he positioned ninth, progressing easily to the second phase. Unfortunately Ayrton was meanwhile unable to make the most of the qualifier and closed in thirteenth position. Having failed to progress to stage two, the Italian rider will start tomorrow’s races from the fifth row.
Superpole 2 – In the second mini-session and with the second qualifying tyre, Xavi further improved on the already impressive time he set in phase one (1’41.8), concluding this phase in eighth position and proceeding to the third and final phase as a result.
Superpole 3 – with only a race tyre remaining, Fores pushed right to the end to earn final eighth position thanks to a best time of 1’42.2. The Ducati Alstare flagbearer will therefore start from the third row of the grid for tomorrow’s races, a positive result for the Spaniard in his first ever Superpole.
Ayrton Badovini: “It’s not the result we wanted of course. I hoped that in this final Superpole of the season we could do more. I just couldn’t make the most of the qualifying tyre and so we were out after the first stage. We’ll have to see what we can do, and change, for tomorrow’s races but it won’t be easy from the fifth row of the grid.”
Xavi Fores: “I’m really pleased because to take part in all three phases of the Superpole is a really positive result. It was my first experience of Superpole and I didn’t expect to get as far as the final phase to be honest. Step by step we’re improving and I’m feeling more and more at ease on the bike. With the qualifying tyre it was tricky because I’ve not used it before and there were definitely points where, with more experience, I could have opened the throttle a lot sooner. There’s still room for improvement and that’s a good thing. We’ll keep working and gradually we’ll get there. Our pace is slightly slower than the front five or six guys but I think that if I make a strong start tomorrow I’ll be able to stick with the second group. Anyway we’ll see, but I’m feeling confident.”
BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK Team - WSBK - Jerez - Superpole
There was light and shadow for the BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK Team in the final Superpole qualifying of the 2013 FIM Superbike World Championship. Despite his injured right ankle, factory rider Marco Melandri (ITA) equaled his second best qualifying result of the season. He finished the Superpole qualifying in a strong fourth with his BMW S 1000 RR and will start tomorrow’s races at Jerez (ESP) from the second row. His team-mate Chaz Davies (GBR) struggled in the second part of Superpole and finished tenth. Superstock-1000-champion Sylvain Barrier (FRA), who debuts in World Superbikes on a third RR for the team, only narrowly missed qualifying for Superpole and will start from 16th.
To give his foot a rest before Superpole, Marco did not take part in the free practice early this afternoon. He was then the first rider to go out in Superpole 1. He only did one flying lap on race tyres, set the fastest time of the session and returned to the pits. Chaz also only needed one fast lap on race tyres to comfortably qualify for the second part of the Superpole. There, Marco did two laps on race tyres which directly brought him to Superpole 3. Chaz also began with race tyres and then did a second outing on a qualifying tyre, as he needed to improve his time. But the Welshman did not benefit from the extra-grip the tyre offers. He narrowly missed Superpole 3 by only a few hundredths of a second and had to settle for tenth. In the third and final session, Marco used his two qualifying tyres and set the fourth fastest time.
In the FIM Superstock 1000 Cup, IDM champion Markus Reiterberger (GER) took over duties on Sylvain’s BMW HP4. He finished sixth in today’s second qualifying session and thus will start tomorrow’s race from the second row. His team-mate Greg Gildenhuys (RSA) qualified tenth on the other HP4 in the BMW Motorrad GoldBet STK Team.
Fastest lap Qualifying Practices: 1:42.035 min (P6) / Fastest lap FP: -- / Fastest lap Superpole 3: 1:40.930 min (P4)
“On this track during winter testing the bike worked well and this weekend the bike has been working well too. This morning I chose to, and agreed with the team to sit out free practice to avoid overloading the ankle. Superpole was quite good, despite the fact I was not able to ride 100 percent in all sectors. In the first two Superpole sessions the ankle was okay, then in the third I started having some pain. I’m satisfied with the fourth place and I’m optimistic for tomorrow. We’re so close to our competitors, the race pace is good and the bike is okay. This afternoon I’ll do some more physio to the ankle to be fit for tomorrow.”
Fastest lap Qualifying Practices: 1:42.300 min (P7) / Fastest lap FP: 1:43.070 min (P9) / Fastest lap Superpole 2: 1:42.015 min (P10)
“I am not happy with today. It was a difficult afternoon. With the increasing temperatures we suffered from lack of grip. I crashed on the first lap of free practice and then in Superpole I was not able to get any advantage with the qualifying tyre which is something that happened to me for the first time this year. I could feel the grip but the way it was pushing the front did not allow me to use the tyre to its advantage. It was kind of frustrating because I did my best lap on a race tyre in Superpole 1 and after that I was not able to repeat it. We will now work on the set-up for the races as there are some areas where we still need to improve. We will check the data and see what we can do to be well prepared for tomorrow.”
Fastest lap Qualifying Practices: 1:42.933 min (P16) / Fastest lap FP: 1:42.842 min (P8)
“Of course I would have been very happy to be in Superpole but I missed it by one tenth of a second. It is my first time on this bike and that is part of the game so I am not really frustrated. We found some good settings for the race today and I am pretty happy for this. I’m getting more and more used to the bike and understand better what I can do with it. I did many laps on used tyres to find out how I can control the bike and I think it will be good in the race. The races will be very tough. I just need to keep calm and focus on braking, going through the apex and opening the throttle correctly. I am sure that during the race I will continue to learn as I can follow some riders and watch what they are doing. I am confident..”
Serafino Foti (Sport Director BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK Team):
“It was a quite positive day. Marco has some pain with his ankle but, despite everything, he did an excellent job in Superpole. Of course tomorrow will be much difficult because the race is very long but given the fact he’ll start in a good position he will do his best for the last races. Chaz unfortunately is not completely happy with the bike but he’s very motivated to have two good races tomorrow. We’ll continue working to set-up the bike and tomorrow morning in the warm up we’ll check the work we will do. Sylvain is improving on each outing, it was a pity he didn’t get into Superpole by just one tenth, even because he could have ridden some more laps getting more and more feeling with the bike. Tomorrow he’ll do his best to have a good race.
In the Superstock 1000 Cup, Markus secured a good grid position on the second row. We are sure that he will make good use of it and have a strong race. He is an experienced rider and he got acquainted with the HP4 and the DDC pretty soon. So we are optimistic that he will claim a good result for BMW.”
Andrea Dosoli (Technical Director BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK Team):
“It was not an easy day for our three riders but overall we have improved the performance of the bikes. We fixed some of the issues the riders had complained about yesterday and as a consequence we saw an improvement in the lap times. Marco has shown us today how strong motivation can overcome the pain of an injury and we were honestly surprised by what he could do in Superpole. He did not to ride in the free practice to avoid stressing the ankle and for this reason we could not use the session to fine tune the bike but the set-up is not bad anyway. He was fast with used tyres and then he did a very promising lap time with a fresh tyre in Superpole. So I am confident that tomorrow he will try to say ‘Goodbye’ to BMW with a good result. Chaz has improved the handling of his machine, it is a bit more agile which is what he was looking for but he is not confident with the front end of the bike. This is limiting his performance. He could not make best use of the qualifying tyre because he did not have the proper feeling in the front end to push. This is the area we want to improve for the race.
Sylvain has improved his lap time a lot. Unfortunately he did not make it to the Superpole but it was very close. The good point is that every time he jumps on the bike he is improving his performance. Step by step he knows the bike better and he is able to get the best from it as we have seen in the second free practice where he made another step in tough conditions because the track temperature was high. So I expect that he can do a good race tomorrow. Race one will be important for him to understand how the competitors can handle 20 laps on a Superbike. It will be a good experience for him and I wish him all the best for tomorrow.”
SUPERPOLE FOR EUGENE LAVERTY, EXTREMELY FAST IN ALL THE SESSIONS WITH A DOUBLE WIN IN HIS SIGHTS.
SYLVAIN GUINTOLI WILL START FROM THE SECOND ROW TOMORROW (FIFTH BEST TIME).
DAVIDE GIUGLIANO ON THE TEAM ALTHEA RSV4 EARNED A FRONT ROW START WITH THE THIRD BEST TIME.
Jerez, 19 October 2013 - The stated objective was to leave no space for his rivals and Eugene Laverty lived up to the expectations. Extremely fast in all the sessions, the Northern Irish rider rode his RSV4 to the second Superpole of the season on the Jerez circuit. Team mate Sylvain Guintoli stopped the clock with the fifth best time, in any case consoled by the good times he made during the practice sessions.
The Aprilia dominated Saturday at Jerez was completed with a third place by Davide Giugliano (Althea Racing), whereas the home town idol, Toni Elias, astride his Red Devils team Aprilia RSV4 fell victim to a crash right at the end and will have to settle for the sixth best time which in any case earns him an excellent spot on the second row.
Eugene and Sylvain managed Superpole 1 expertly, putting in strong times with race tyres and saving the two soft tyres for the more heated qualifying phases. In Superpole 2 they got down to business, with all the riders out of the pits on qualifying tyres and Eugene Laverty made his intentions known by setting the best provisional time, followed by Elias and team mate Guintoli.
In the final and decisive Superpole session Eugene outdid himself, shaving another two tenths off his time and stopping the clock at 1'40.620, a new fast lap for the category which earned him first place on the starting grid tomorrow and his second Superpole of the season after Silverstone. Sylvain Guintoli ran into a few difficulties with his second soft Pirelli tyre, in any case obtaining a promising fifth best time in the end.
Eugene Laverty: “Considering the gap behind Sykes, my only chance this weekend is to win both races. Starting ahead of the rest on the grid will definitely make that easier! Tomorrow I'll try to get off the line well and give it my all during the race. Sykes will also be starting from the front row and he'll definitely be trying to make his play to try and stop me, so that should make the races fairly interesting for the fans”.
Sylvain Guintoli: “As always this was quite a heated Superpole and in the end I was about a tenth off compared to the front row. The positive thing is that in any case we found good base setting during the practice session to be fast even on used tyres. It's always better to start from the front, but the fifth spot isn't a total disaster. I just need to stay focused and maintain my pace in the races tomorrow”.
Challenging raceday ahead for Pata Honda
Pata Honda riders Michel Fabrizio and Leon Haslam face a challenging final two 2013 World Superbike championship races at Jerez in Spain tomorrow. The CBR-mounted duo will start from 15th and 17th places respectively on the grid after final qualifying today.
Both riders complained of a lack of rear grip in today’s free practice and qualifying sessions – an issue that also faced Fabrizio yesterday, while Haslam found more consistency in his engine braking.
The Pata Honda pair were joined in the pitbox today by regular rider Jonathan Rea, who plans to test his CBR during a test at the 4.423km Jerez circuit on Tuesday, as he continues his recovery from the fractured femur he sustained in a raceday crash last month.
It’s been another difficult day and we haven’t really managed to solve the grip problems that I had yesterday. I think Leon had the same issue today. Although I was able to qualify for Superpole, we could not get the bike to work how I want so tomorrow will be very tough, both physically and mentally.
We made some changes to the electronics today, which seemed to stabilise the engine braking and, in the second free practice, we were able to make some more improvements. However, by that time I was out of Superpole so I know that tomorrow’s two races are going to be very difficult. However, we’ve got a test on Tuesday so we’ll also try to continue preparing for that.
Pieter Breddels – technical co-ordinator
There’s no disguising the fact that we’ve had some issues this weekend that we didn’t expect. We’ve had difficulty sorting them and providing the riders with solutions that will give them a bike with which to challenge nearer the front. However, we will keep working through tonight and tomorrow morning and try to get some better results in the race than we’ve been able to provide in qualifying.
Giugliano scores front row start at Jerez
The second day of qualifying and final Superpole of the season took place today at the circuit of Jerez de la Frontera in Spain. Davide Giugliano, having started the weekend in the best possible way yesterday, by taking provisional pole, repeated his performance in this morning’s second and final qualifying session. The Althea rider earned first place and with a time of 1’41”371 he also recorded a best lap on the Spanish track. In the afternoon’s free practice Davide and his team refined the setting of their RSV4, in preparation for Superpole and tomorrow’s two races. Giugliano (1’42”716) finished seventh in the early afternoon’s free practice.
In Superpole Davide Giugliano and team Althea put in another great performance. In the first phase the young rider recorded the third fastest time, qualifying easily for the second sessions, where the team Althea rider obtained fifth place, proceeded as a result to the final phase. Here Giugliano made the most of the power of his RSV4 but also his last qualifying tyre and with a fantastic time of 1’40”839 he took third place and a place on the front row of the grid for tomorrow’s two 21-lap races.
Genesio Bevilacqua : “Everything’s gone well up until this point. Davide has been fast in every session, finishing both qualifying sessions in first place. In Superpole it’s difficult to make the most of the qualifying tyre but our rider put in a great performance and obtained a front row start which we’re really happy with. I’m especially pleased to have seen such consistency on Davide’s part, he’s demonstrated that he has great race pace. We know we can be fast over the race distance, seeing as in practice Giugliano completed 21 laps with the same tyres, with decent lap times. I’m optimistic for tomorrow and hope we can close the season in the best possible way.”
Davide Giugliano : “I’m really pleased to have scored a front row start. We could have done even better, but I was unable to make a perfect lap with the qualifier and so closed with the third fastest time which is nevertheless satisfying because I’ve shown consistency over the weekend. We have good race pace and the bike is well set up so I hope I can make two good races. Now I want to rest and wait for tomorrow so that I’m ready to give it my all.”
CAMIER CONTINUES AMAZING WSB RETURN
Team Suzuki Press Office – October 19.
FIXI Crescent Suzuki’s Leon Camier has continued with his amazing comeback at this weekend’s Spanish round of the eni FIM Superbike World Championship by progressing all the way to Superpole 3 this afternoon.
Camier qualified for the Superpole due to another impressive performance in this morning’s final qualifying session which saw him finish in ninth place. He approached the Superpole with the same calm and dedicated manner that he has shown all weekend and after using a Pirelli qualifying rear tyre in the first session he easily made his way to part two with sixth position. The Englishman is still suffering the after-effects of the accident at Istanbul just four–weeks ago that left him hospitalised and needing surgery on seven broken bones in his right foot. Camier again used a qualifying tyre in his Yoshimura-powered Suzuki GSX-R in Superpole 2 and repeated his performance from the first session to record sixth. The final part of Superpole for 2013 saw the Suzuki-man push as hard as he could on race-tyres to get a good grid position and he was pleased to secure a place at the front of the third row with seventh position. Camier will now be looking to be in the lead pack from the start of tomorrow’s races and plans to end the season with a flourish.
Jules Cluzel saw the disappointment of not qualifying for Superpole this morning quickly disappear, after some major setting changes to his FIXI Crescent Suzuki GSX-R enabled him make huge improvements in the final free practice session. The Frenchman couldn’t get the feel or grip he was after in the second qualifying session and was only able to finish 18th fastest, a position that forced his elimination from Superpole. His crew worked tirelessly to change almost every setting on his machine and it came to fruition as Cluzel recorded the second-fastest time in the session – almost half-of-a-second quicker than he had been all weekend so far. Cluzel will now need to make good starts in tomorrow’s races so that he can put today’s advances to good use.
Today’s sessions were held in humid conditions, but the threat of rain never materialised. Eugene Laverty will start tomorrow’s two 21-lap races from pole position, with championship leader Tom Sykes second on the grid, with the third protagonist that is in with a chance of securing the title on Sunday, Sylvain Guintoli, in fifth. The first race will get underway at 12.00hrs local time (11.00hrs BST) with the final race of the season heading for the off at 15.30hrs local time (14.30hrs BST).
“I am really pleased with the result, especially considering that I haven’t ridden the bike properly since Germany and had two massive crashes in that time. I have got my confidence back up and the bike was starting to feel more natural and I enjoyed that. We used the qualifying tyre in Superpole 1 and we didn’t really need to; in hindsight we could have saved it till the last session and then I think we could have been further up the grid – at least the next row. All-in-all, considering everything that has happened I am pretty happy with today. I really want to thank the whole team for keeping me calm and letting me build my confidence, rather than asking for more and creating other problems. The whole situation has been dealt with really well and I thank them for that.”
“It has been a strange day and I have had my worst qualifying of the year and also one of my best practice sessions. Yesterday I felt uncomfortable on the bike, so I was looking to improve today, but that didn’t happen and it was a bit of a disaster. I got stuck in the same lap-time and did all of them in the same tenth-of-a-second. I was really disappointed because it left me 18th and meant I couldn’t do Superpole. Les decided to change the bike and put the setting to how we had it at the winter test here, which was the second time I rode the FIXI Crescent Suzuki. The bike was much better, faster and easier to ride and I am disappointed we didn’t make this change before, but I at least had the chance to smile today and that was enough for me! I needed to prove that I was fast and that we just needed to set-up the bike. Tomorrow I will be looking for a comeback but it’s difficult to come from 18th here at Jerez and get a good result, but I will try my best and see what we can do.”
Paul Denning – Team Manager:
“Leon’s done another stellar job today for the FIXI Crescent Suzuki team and continued the great work that he started yesterday. The races will be tough from both a fitness and physical pain point of view, but he’s put himself in a solid position to perform at his best - whatever limitations might be there due to the pain and fatigue that he might be suffering. Adrenalin is a great healer though and when the lights go out to race at a great circuit like this at Jerez, I’m sure the throttle will be wide open and the problems of the last few weeks will be the last thing on his mind.
“It’s been a frustrating day for Jules and his crew; even though the lap-time gaps are very small we didn’t do enough this morning to achieve a decent time and despite everybody’s best efforts, including the rider - as we saw on the action footage he was definitely trying – we just didn’t have enough to progress to Superpole. The boys changed the bike quite considerably for the free practice and we went from 18th to second, so it was very much a case of what might have been. Jules has nothing to lose tomorrow and his confidence should have been boosted by what happened in free practice, so we are hoping he can end the season in a very positive way.”
Webb secures 11th on the grid for final race at Jerez
PTR HONDA'S Danny Webb improved his lap time to secure 11th on the grid for tomorrow's 13th and final round of the 2013 World Supersport Championship at Jerez in Spain.
After a tumble late in qualifying yesterday, the Londoner took time to work up to full speed in qualifying today. Danny said: "It's not too bad, it's 11th. I was hoping for a bit better but put too much pressure on myself at the beginning. In the first two runs I tried to go fast and was tense. Last time out I relaxed and got the time. I need to keep it fast and flowing. If I can get a good start in the race then I can try to get away with the group in front."
Lee Johnston was 16th in morning free practice and secured 23rd in qualifying, just ahead of Luca Marconi in 24th and Nacho Perez in 25th. Corey Alexander in 28th couldn't match his time from yesterday after a crash this morning meant a race to get his bike rebuilt in time for qualifying. After a small technical problem caused by the crash was fixed he had lost significant time and any opportunity to improve. The race takes place at 1330CET on Sunday, October 20th.
Simon Buckmaster, PTR Honda Team Manager, said: "Danny was a bit stiff and sore after yesterday's crash and while he improved his time he was trying too hard to begin with. It is a good feeling that we are all a little bit disappointed not to have qualified higher. I am confident we can still find more speed in warm up ahead of the race.
"Lee is struggling for more confidence in the front, so we will sit down with him and see what we can do in warm up. He is doing well but couldn't match his pace from this morning. We need to understand that and put it right.
"Luca tried hard and has improved in time but not position. We need to find more for him. Nacho has improved and his approach is good. He always races better and wants to finish the season on a high with a top 20 finish.
"Corey had a massive crash this morning and then we lost a lot of time in the session fixing a technical problem caused by the crash. Well done to the team for getting the bike back together in time to get him out in qualifying at all. It's a learning curve for him and with a good warm up he can have a strong race."
Pata Honda riders in Spanish Supersport hunt
Michael van der Mark will start tomorrow’s final 2013 World Supersport championship race from the second row of the grid after setting the sixth fastest time in today’s second qualifying session at Jerez in Spain.
The Dutch rider qualified two places ahead of his Pata Honda team-mate Lorenzo Zanetti, who was eighth fastest today, while recently-crowned world champion Sam Lowes took pole position.
Van der Mark and his crew found an improvement to the setting on his Pata Honda CBR600RR for today’s qualifying session and the 20-year-old is confident of a further step up during warm-up tomorrow to allow him to challenge for a podium finish in the 20-lap race at the 4.423km Jerez circuit.
Zanetti suffered a small crash early in the final qualifying session this afternoon which upset the Italian rider’s rhythm, but the 26-year-old is planning a strong challenge during tomorrow’s race.
Michael van der Mark – P6
To be honest it’s been quite a difficult weekend so far, but this afternoon we made a big, big improvement for qualifying. Immediately I was quite happy with the bike and the race pace is not too bad. I think there are a couple of things we can still improve and we have learned this year that I am not a one-lap wonder. But I’m quite consistent and I think with some small changes for the race we can be near the front.
Lorenzo Zanetti – P8
I am a little frustrated because I started immediately this afternoon with a good lap time compared to this morning and yesterday. We changed the rear tyre for the second outing and immediately I crashed which upset my rhythm and my feeling for the bike. The team fixed the bike and I was able to get close to my best time but, unfortunately I missed the first two rows.
Jerez, top qualifying for the MV's of the ParkinGO Team.
Positive day for ParkinGO MV Agusta Corse and the F3 675 of Roberto Rolfo and Christian Iddon.
Roberto Rolfo, already very fast in the morning free practice with the 5th best time, has worked on the gearbox to find a better feeling with the bike.
In the afternoon qualifying the rider from Torino has been very quick during the whole session getting the 2nd best time.
Chistian Iddon, first time in the Spanish track, has finished ninth in free practice and a brilliant 5th time on the afternoon qualifying.
Two MV F3 675 within the first two rows of the grid, is an excellent result that rewards the team on their debut.
I am very satisfied. The work we said we were going to do in the gearbox, has given its results and now I haven’t really got many weak points on my lap.
Tomorrow will be the last race of the season; I will try to do an aggressive start and a good result for my team.
It has been a fantastic day, it really couldn’t be better at a track that I haven’t seen before.
The bike is perfect and I have a good pace. Even the ideal time is excellent so it gives me a good general feeling.
With a closed championship and a last card to play, I have no doubt for tomorrow. I will give 110% to finish the championship with another podium.
Kennedy 20th In Spanish WSS Qualifying
The Rivamoto team had a tough day at the office during the final round of the World Supersport championship in Jerez, Spain as Jack Kennedy and Edik Blokhin qualified their CBR600cc Honda machines in 20th and 32nd positions respectively.
Kennedy, who currently lies 6th overall in the standings ahead of the final race tomorrow has been chasing set up all weekend, and is now looking for some overnight fix to allow him challenge strongly in tomorrow’s 20 lap race.
The weekend looked to be going in the right direction after the opening Free Practice session on Friday but after struggling to achieve the optimum set up the Dubliner finds himself on row 7 of the grid.
Despite the lowly position, the whole team are optimistic that some solutions can be found overnight and are looking forward to ending the season on a high tomorrow in front of what is expected to be a record crowd for the season finale.
Jeremy McWilliams – Team Manager: “We have had a bit of an uphill struggle all weekend, and haven’t really moved forward in 4 sessions. Jack’s not sure why, and their is nothing that we can put our finger on which will give us a quick fix. We need to think overnight about how we can get Jack where he needs to be. We’ve done it before so let’s see what tomorrow brings.”
Jack Kennedy - “We tried everything but it just wasn’t to be today. I felt like I was on the limit but no times were coming which is the most frustrating thing. Hopefully we can find some confidence in warm up and end the season strongly.”
Lewis Only 14th On Grid For European Junior Cup Title Decider
Jake Lewis has given himself a lot of work to do in tomorrow’s PATA European Junior Cup finale after qualifying 14th on the grid for the 8 lap encounter.
To add insult to injury, the talented Kiwi, who is defending a slender 4 point advantage, saw his closest rival secure pole position in a qualifying session that saw less than 2 seconds covering the top nineteen riders on the grid.
Lewis is still confident however and is keen to show his true potential after showing a consistently fast pace despite the lowly position.
Jake has shown throughout the season that he is not averse to fighting hard and with the standings so close nothing less than a podium will do so we can expect fireworks when the lights go out tomorrow.
Jake Lewis: “We are ok for tomorrow. Of course starting 14th makes it harder but we will be ok and we will fight to win and what will be, will be.”
The race is due to start before the final World Superbike race of the season and should play out in front of a record crowd who will be crammed into the Jerez circuit from the earliest opportunity.
Pata European Junior Cup all set for 2014
The Pata European Junior Cup, powered by Honda, will again feature at eight rounds of the eni FIM Superbike World Championship in 2014, it was announced at Jerez in Spain yesterday.
Designed specifically to identify potential future racing champions, the series is open to young racers from all over the world aged between 14 and 19 who will compete on identically-prepared Honda CBR500R machines, once again with the continued support of Italian snack manufacturer Pata.
The championship was launched a year ago at the EICMA show in Milan with the Pata Honda World Superbike team’s Jonathan Rea riding Honda’s new CBR500R on to the stage in front of the world’s media.
Since then, 46 riders from 18 countiries around the world have shared the World Superbike championship paddock and circuits with some of the world’s finest racers and most influential racing people.
This year, the European Junior Cup has produced some of the closest and most exciting races of the 2013 SBK season. With the final race due to take place at Jerez tomorrow (Sunday), eight riders still have a mathematical chance of claiming the title.
Gerry Bryce - series director
We are very pleased to continue working with Dorna SBK, Honda and Pata Chips. The European Junior Cup has grown in stature year-on-year and for 2013 we have been privileged to have some of the best young racers from around the world competing. Jerez will be a very exciting conclusion to what has been a great season for us all and it will produce a worthy champion. We look forward now to working with a new class of talented teen racers in 2014.
Carlo Fiorani - racing operations manager, Honda Motor Europe
Honda’s involvement in the European Junior Cup has been an incredible success; even more than our expectations. This is not only from a sporting and technical aspect but also from a human point of view. The relationship between competitors and parents in the EJC paddock has been great and we are very happy to renew our own relationship with the series in 2014. From a commercial point of view, the Honda CBR500R has also been a great success in the market, based on its performance and its sporting appeal to young riders, so we are happy with all aspects of the relationship.
Daniel Carrera - WSBK championship director, Dorna
We are delighted to continue offering the possibility to young riders to start their careers with fully production bikes provided by Honda, sharing and living in the same paddock as the big stars of the eni FIM Superbike World Championship. They have provided very exciting races during the last seasons and we are confident that we can still grow up together to establish this competition as the initial springboard for our championship.
Spanish Riders Dominate European Junior Cup Qualifying At Jerez
Spanish riders have dominated the final PATA European Junior Cup qualifying session of the season at Jerez with four riders inside the top 5!
With a second covering the top eleven on the grid for tomorrow’s 8 lap finale, the eventual Pole Position went to local rider Augusto Fernandez who clung on in the final moments to take his first ever Pole Position, ahead of Honda Spain’s wildcard entry Mika Perez who is riding the CBR 500cc RR Honda machine for the first time this weekend. Italian Michael Canducci was filling in the Spanish sandwich in 3rd position ahead of Illan Fernandez and Javier Orellana and Swede Jesper Hubner who will complete the second row.
Josh Harland (Great Britain) was fastest yesterday but could only manage 9th today. Miguel Aranda (Spain) and Peter Sebestyen (Hungary) will join him on the 3rd row tomorrow, in 7th and 8th positions respectively.
Of the championship contenders, Britain’s James Flitcroft tumbled early in the session but was able to remount, eventually qualifying 13th, while championship leader Jake Lewis could only manage 14th. Robin Anne (France) also struggled, ending the session in 22nd position.
Female riders Sabrina Paiuta (Brazil) and Amelie Demoulin (France) once again were right in the mix in 16th and 26th positions respectively.
The championship deciding race is scheduled to take place before the 2nd World Superbike race tomorrow afternoon and if the first two days of competition are anything to go by, all we can predict is uncertainty of the final result!
SBK Stk600 - San Carlo Team Italia wins the European title with Morbidelli, Nocco is runner up!
In the last race, the two Italian stay in control to seize a historical title, which had been missing since Claudio Corti's triumph as a rookie
Franco Morbidelli (Kawasaki ZX-6R#12), starting from pole position, shook off the tension after a few turns and climbed back from fifth to second position. With a strong pace, he even tried to steal victory from Smith at then end, but decided not to take too many risks. A second-place finish allowed him to preserve his championship lead and win the title for San Carlo Team Italia FMI.
Alessando Nocco (Kawasaki ZX-6R#81) confirmed his talent in Jerez, contending for the title until the very end and being passed by his teammate only in the final stages. The third place under the flag allowed to take rookie of the year recognition and score runner-up in the championship, laying solid foundations for his future endeavors.
Franco Morbidelli (Kawasaki ZX-6R#12) 2nd, +0"308
"The race was great even though I didn't start well. I was a little tense, but then regained focus and started my comeback. I even tried to win but second place was good enough for me. I'm elated with the title, and I want to thank everyone for this opportunity: my bike was always competitive and the team allowed me to express my talent."
Alessandro Nocco (Kawasaki ZX-6R#81) 3rd, +0"827
"It's been a good race, but it could have gone better. I had some grip issues at the end, and couldn't fight back with Franco. I'm happy for him though. We're family. I'm also happy finishing second in the championship. I'm just 16, I think it's good. I want to thank my friends, my sponsors, and FMI for the opportunity."
Cristiano Migliorati (FMI Technical Coordinator)
"Congratulations to both riders, it was a perfect race. Nocco was smart in not taking risks with his teammate. Morbidelli has been consistent all year. Both showed talent and skills. I also want to congratulate Gamarino for his resiliency. It's a shame he couldn't fight with us until the end and complete an Italian podium, but he's there in the rankings. I want to share this win with the whole team, FMI, and our sponsors."