Press releases from the organization and the teams after the racing at Imola:
WorldSBK: Davies Dominates for a Ducati Double at Home
Aruba.it rider takes a second stunning win of the weekend
Ducati title challenger Chaz Davies threw down the gauntlet to Championship leader Jonathan Rea in Race 2 at Imola as the Welshman again lead off the line from pole position and took a commanding victory. Kawasaki Racing Team’s reigning Champion Rea crossed the line second despite struggling with some issues, heading teammate Tom Sykes over the line.
Under worsening skies at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari, the WorldSBK grid got away on a dry track with Davies leading off the line and the two KRT riders once again able to leapfrog second Aruab.it rider Davide Giugliano. With a few moments for Rea on track that saw him lose touch with leader Davies, the reigning Champion held it together to get another big haul of points towards his title defence. Sykes kept close to his teammate for the majority of the race, but was unable to make a pass on the daunting 4.9km of Imola.
Davide Giugliano was the lead home rider on the second Aruba.it machine, and started from the middle of the front row to come home in P4, making an improvement on his Saturday result of P5. Leon Camier brought more home glory for the host nation as the Brit rode his MV Agusta to another top 5 finish after a best of P4 recently for the Italian manufacturer, adding more points to the ever expanding tally and completing their first weekend of points scoring finishes at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari.
Alex Lowes, after a difficult Superpole 2, fought his Pata Yamaha YZF R1 up into the Top 6 after succumbing to Camier, in front of Jordi Torres as the Catalan Althea BMW rider was left outside the top ten near the start of the race and pulled off an impressive recovery ride. Lorenzo Savadori on his Aprilia made sure there was representation for every manufacturer in the top 8 at Imola, before suffering a problem on the last lap and being relegated to P11 over the line.
Honda duo Nicky Hayden and Michael van der Mark ended the second race of the weekend in P8 and P9 respectively, after a difficult few days in Imola where the Assen podium finishers found themselves further back on the grid than both are used to. Xavi Forés completed the top ten for Barni Racing team on his Ducati, classified ahead of Savadori at the flag.
WorldSBK will now go jet set once again as the paddock heads east to Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia for the next Round of the 2016 season.
WorldSBK - Imola Race 2
1. Chaz Davies Aruba.it Racing - Ducati
2. Jonathan Rea Kawasaki Racing Team +4.262
3. Tom Sykes Kawasaki Racing Team +4.604
Chaz Davies does the double at Imola, fourth place for Davide Giugliano in Race 2
The Aruba.it Racing - Ducati team enjoyed an unforgettable weekend in Imola. After taking the Panigale R to a historic first win on Italian soil in Race 1, Chaz Davies did the double in Race 2. The Welshman’s tally also includes Superpole and the fastest lap in both races.
Thanks to another ‘holeshot’ at the start, Davies managed to impose his rhythm and quickly pulled away from the rest of the field, posting the race’s fastest lap with a 1:42.240 in lap 6 and then increasing his lead to five seconds, a margin he administered until the finish line, preceding Jonathan Rea and Tom Sykes.
Davide Giugliano, fifth in Race 1, showed a strong progression with a pace worthy of the podium. Some difficulties in the early laps prevented him from fighting with the factory Kawasakis, but two top-five finishes give the Italian confidence ahead of the next races. With five rounds in the books, Davies (186 points) and Giugliano (88 points) sit in second and fifth position respectively in the championship, while Ducati (196) is second in the Manufacturers rankings. The WorldSBK season will resume in two weeks’ time in Sepang (Malaysia).
Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #7) – 1st
“It’s just been an incredible week-end, from start to finish. The latest upgrades Ducati brought for the Panigale R in Aragon allowed us to compete for the win in each race. To seize a victory here in Imola, Ducati’s backyard, is special. To do a double, is unbelievable. Today the conditions were different, but we were able to create a gap since the first few laps. I made a couple of mistakes in lap 9 that made me lose a second, but also helped me stay focused until the checkered flag. We head to Sepang with confidence, as we have a more competitive package than last year, when we still left Malaysia with a second place and a win. Our goal is to keep the momentum and further cut the gap in the championship.”
Davide Giugliano (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #34) – 4th
“Today we made another step forward with the setup and I probably could have fought for the podium as my pace was similar to Sykes’, but I struggled early on to warm up the rear tyre. Compared with the last couple of races, this round has definitely been positive, with two top-five finishes that give me a confidence boost to get back on the right track. I want to give my special thanks to the many Ducati fans who showed an incredible warmth despite our recent struggles. Sepang will be another tough battle, both because of the climate and the layout, but we’re not holding back.”
Ernesto Marinelli, Superbike Project Director
“This has been one of the best week-ends one could hope for, with two undisputed victories. It has been a while since the last time we achieved that in Imola, where the passion for Ducati is so strong. We’re extremely happy with the work done both by the team and the people at home. I want to congratulate Chaz for two perfect races, and Davide for taking another step in the right direction. We hope to see them both on the podium soon.”
Both KRT Riders On The Imola WorldSBK Podium Again
Jonathan Rea and his KRT team-mate Tom Sykes stood on the podium for the second time in two days at Imola, with Rea once more second and Sykes again a close third on their all-new Ninja ZX-10Rs. Jonathan now has a championship lead of 35 points while Tom is third, 32 points from overall second place.
Rea and Sykes rode in tandem at times in the second race of the Imola weekend, which was finally held in dry conditions after heavy overnight rain. Neither KRT rider could get into contention with double race winner Chaz Davies today, despite each making changes for the second race that indicated a positive direction in overall set-up.
Like the first race of the weekend, held on Saturday 30 April, Sykes was just too far back at the end to make a challenge on Rea. Jonathan had to overcome an issue with his electronics cutting out and also almost falling as he ran wide when exiting the slow final chicane in his early pursuit of Davies.
For Rea his two runner-up places keep him in a clear championship lead, 35 points ahead of Davies. Jonathan also maintained his 100% podium record today, having scored ten from ten (including five wins) as he defends his reigning champion status. Rea has now scored 75 podiums in his WorldSBK career.
With two third place finishes at Imola Sykes has now scored seven podiums from ten starts in 2016 and 71 podiums over his career, which includes a world championship win with Kawasaki in 2013. Sykes extended his lead over fourth place in the championship to 48 points today – equivalent to almost two full race wins.
The next round of the championship takes place at the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia, with racedays on May 14 and 15.
Jonathan Rea stated: “Chaz made a very good first lap and broke me a little bit but then I felt like I was managing the same pace and maybe even faster. Then I had a huge moment on the exit of the last chicane. I ran onto the Astroturf, which had held moisture from last night’s rain. A few laps later, when I was in fifth gear and on full gas, my bike just cut out on the straight. I lost two or three seconds in one lap. It fired into life again but it took me a few corners to relax again. It feels like when we can’t win we should finish second and we did that at Imola. It is clear now that there are three guys now at the top of the championship. Every dog has his day and today was not ours.”
Tom Sykes stated: “We made some improvements from yesterday but we suffered after losing almost one hour on Friday in practice. Considering the race yesterday I felt a little bit more comfortable with the bike today but when there was a bike in front I was not able to do a good lap time. I was dropping back into the 1’48s and on a clear track I could bring it into the 1’47s. Even on the last lap there was a 1’47.7 and that was with making a mistake out of the final double lefts. So there are positives to be taken from this weekend. You are never happy with third but you also have to be realistic and sometimes be happy with that. Even when we are struggling we are on the podium.”
Despite crashing then being struck by another rider’s machine in warm-up on Saturday, Swiss rider Dominic Schmitter (Grillini Racing Team Kawasaki) took to the track in race two and scored his first point of the season for 15th place. Saeed Al Sulaiti (Pedercini Racing Team Kawasaki) finished one place behind and just missed his first point score since he joined the WorldSBK championship. Aussie rider Josh Hook (Grillini Racing Team Kawasaki) fell in the middle of the final chicane early in the second race, at almost exactly the same time as stand-in rider for the injured Roman Ramos (Go Eleven Team Kawasaki), Gianluca Vizziello.
Hayden and van der Mark complete Italian round with two top-10 finishes
Round 5 – Italy
Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Italy
The fifth round of the 2016 FIM Superbike World Championship has drawn to a close at Imola’s ‘Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari’, with Honda WorldSBK Team’s Nicky Hayden and Michael van der Mark in 8th and 9th places, respectively, at the end of race two in Italy. The encounter, which took place in dry conditions over the full 19-lap distance, was won by Great Britain’s Chaz Davies.
Hayden got a great start from the third row of the grid and was running sixth before losing three positions at the end of lap one. The experienced American battled hard with Althea BMW’s Jordi Torres and Markus Reiterberger in the middle of the race and, as the laps went by, he consolidated eighth place up to the chequered flag. Michael van der Mark spent the majority of the encounter on the edge of the top 10 and was able to make up a couple of positions in the final laps, crossing the line 1.4secs behind his teammate.
With five rounds completed, Michael van der Mark sits fourth in the championship standings, while Nicky Hayden is seventh. The next round of the World Superbike championship will take place in Malaysia at the Sepang International Circuit on May 13–15.
Nicky Hayden 69
We made some changes overnight that unfortunately we couldn’t try during the warm up as the track was still partially wet. We decided to keep the settings for the race anyway and the bike was a little bit better; I was able to make the same lap-times as in race one despite using the harder tyre, which we had to choose given the lower temperatures compared to yesterday. Maybe it took me a little longer to understand the changes at the beginning and that cost me a bit of time. Overall it has been a difficult weekend; regardless, the team was able to improve the bike over the weekend and I had to learn the track, which in the end wasn’t too difficult. I hope next year we’ll be faster around here and now I’m looking forward to Sepang.
Michael van der Mark 60
It’s been a really difficult weekend. It looked like we found the right direction yesterday in Superpole but today we thought that, with a different tyre, we would have solved the issues encountered yesterday. Unfortunately during race two I found it really hard to change direction and this meant that I could neither be quick nor build any sort of rhythm. Now we have to look forward to Sepang, which is a completely different track. I’m pretty confident that the team and I will be able to bounce back and score some great results there.
We had some adjustments in mind for today and surely, if the conditions were drier this morning, we would have had a clearer indication about them. Michael was able to do a couple of laps with slicks and that gave us a little bit of information, while Nicky stayed out on wet tyres. With the new set-up and the different tyres used, both riders were able to get the bikes stopped better than yesterday, although this translated into a harder time in changing direction. After losing basically the whole first day while trying to find a set-up with the wrong tyres, we had to play catch-up yesterday and today. Now we need to analyse what happened in order to be ready for the next race.
Strong Sixth for Lowes in Imola Race Two
Alex Lowes got his final race at the Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari Imola off to a flying start this afternoon as he fired his Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK YZF-R1 off the lights. Reaping the benefits of his impressive start the British rider inherited seven places from his 13th position on the grid, holding sixth from the opening lap. Circulating strongly with the group around him, Lowes maintained his position and consistent pace to the mid-race distance before gaining the advantage on the rider in front. Continuing to build his rhythm as his pace improved he set his fastest lap of the race - a 1'47.848 - on lap 11, but with tyre wear starting to feature the Yamaha rider knew he needed a more conservative race to the finish to consolidate his position. Lowes concluded the race in sixth, boosting his championship position back in to the top-10 with 59 points.
Sylvain Guintoli returned to the WorldSBK paddock after being released from the local Imola hospital late last night. Diagnosed with a broken left ankle - which required only plaster and no surgery - and bruised ribs, the Frenchman joined his team to watch the second race from the Pata Yamaha garage. Travelling home this evening, he will re-evaluate his injuries in the coming days before any decisions on his return to competitive action are made.
6th / +20.078 / 19 laps
"A better day than yesterday obviously! We made some changes to the bike overnight which gave me a better feeling and this helped me to do my best lap of the weekend after 11 laps of the race. I was struggling a little with consistency at the end but we learnt a lot and did a good job. We made some good steps forward compared to our opposition and our next target has got to be to start the weekends a little more competitively from the outset. Obviously it's still a new bike and we are learning as we go along but I think a lot of what we have achieved here will be relevant as we head to other tracks and hopefully we can be a bit more competitive from the start of Friday."
"Of course this is a disappointing situation. The positive is that it could have been a lot worse because the crash was actually a really big impact. In that respect the injuries are not that bad compared to the crash, but we have to understand why this happened so we can move forward and concentrate on the future. The ankle is broken and I am very bruised because I came down hard, but despite that I feel quite good. My ribs are very bruised which is the painful bit but we just have to see how I will recover now and see in a couple of days if we can go for Malaysia."
Paul Denning - Team Principal
"A far more positive day for the Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team than yesterday, firstly because Sylvain was able to leave hospital and join us here at the track, looking a lot healthier and in less pain. Let's see how the next couple of days go and what the full detailed diagnosis of the ankle injury is before we make any decisions for Malaysia.
"The wet conditions in warm up didn't help us make any assessment of the changes the team had made from yesterday's race for Alex but the race distance result clarifies that we've moved in the right direction. Alex had an incredible start from 13th on the grid and made some awesome passes in the first lap to get up to sixth but what was more important was his ability to keep moving forward, set his best time of the race on lap 11 and maintain a lot more consistency towards the end than we've seen in recent races. We knew Imola would be a tricky track so to make this progress after an extremely difficult Friday and Saturday morning is encouraging for the future."
De Rosa and the Althea BMW Racing Team on the podium at home in Imola; seventh for Torres in Superbike
Imola (Italy), Sunday 1 May 2016
Round 5 of the Superbike World Championship came to an end for the Althea BMW Racing Team at the Italian circuit of Imola today, with the team’s riders Jordi Torres and Markus Reiterberger finishing Race 2 in seventh and twelfth place respectively.
In the Superstock 1000 race, Raffaele De Rosa once again reached the podium, crossing the line in third position.
Superbike - Race 2 – Today’s race took place in cloudy but dry conditions. Torres, from sixth on the grid, lost some positions off the line and was lying tenth after lap one. He quickly got into his rhythm with a pace that allowed him to pass first VD Mark, then Hayden and also his team-mate. In eighth place at the mid-race point, the Spaniard was able to make up another position in the closing stages to cross the line seventh, earning more important points for the championship.
Reiti held seventh position though the first laps, positioned between the two Brits Lowes and Camier. Part of a group of riders who were lapping with similar times, the German retained his position for the first half of the race, after which he began to lose ground, closing the race in twelfth place.
After five rounds of the 2016 Superbike World Championship, Jordi Torres holds sixth place in the general standings with 87 points, Reiterberger positions thirteenth with 47points. BMW is fourth in the manufacturer's classification (92 points), while Althea BMW lies fourth in the team rankings (134 points).
Superstock – Race – Today’s Stock1000 was a hard-fought one, which brought a very welcome podium result for Althea BMW man Raffaele De Rosa. Fourth on the grid, the Italian pushed hard from lap one and by lap three he had already passed Calia and Faccani to position second, after which the real battle with Mercado began. The two riders exchanged places at the front until a few laps from the end when Raffaele lost some precious time due to tyre wear. The young Italian continued to push until the end to close today’s race in third position.
“I thought I’d made a good start but still lost some places. We changed a few things for race 2, also using new brake pads. Unfortunately though, the bike seemed too loaded at the front and I wasn’t used to these brake pads, which behaved differently to the ones I'd used in the past and caused some vibrations which bothered me especially in the second half of the race. I was also forced to use the front tyre less, which meant that the rear was totally destroyed. All in all, it didn’t go badly and I made up some places but the important thing is that we have collected more information which will be useful for Malaysia, I thank my team for its hard work this weekend.”
“The first few laps were good and I was in seventh place, over the first six or seven laps I had good pace but not as fast as those ahead of me. Unfortunately I then started to suffer with a lot of vibration in the whole bike. The rear tyre was destroyed and it was all I could do to get to the end of the race. It’s a problem we’ve had before but not as bad as today so we must look at the data to understand how to resolve this.”
Raffaele De Rosa
“A satisfactory result. My start was not perfect and I lost a few positions. Then, to make up the lost ground in the initial phases I probably pushed a bit too hard and, as a result, I suffered with the tyres from mid-race onwards. I tried to resist and fight back against Mercado but I didn’t have much more to give. I took some risks because I really would have like to win here in Italy but we’ll have to postpone that, and see if we can do it at Donington.”
“A very positive weekend at Imola, with Torres finishing yesterday’s race in fourth and today’s in seventh place. Reiti had a more difficult time, with a brake problem that we were unfortunately unable to solve. All the team’s work is progressing well and we’re collating as much data as possible in order to improve performance in the next races. In Superstock, another great race for Raffaele even though he suffered with a drop in tyre performance, but he showed nevertheless to have the potential to be able to fight for the podium. We hope to do even better in the next races.”
Imola Round, Bitter Race2 for the
Iodaracing Team riders
Imola, May 1, 2016 - The second race of the fifth round of the 2016 Superbike season at Imola has not reserved too many satisfactions to the team Iodaracing. Lorenzo Savadori and Alex De Angelis have crossed the finish line in eleventh and fourteenth place respectively, gaining championship points. With the results of the two races at Imola, the world ranking sees Lorenzo Savadori in eighth place with 64 points, while Alex De Angelis is 15th with 32 points.
In the second race at Imola, Lorenzo Savadori showed good potential in the first half of the race, with a good start from the second row, which allowed him to occupy the fourth position until the fifth lap. Subsequently Savadori was passed by Davide Giugliano with battled few laps, before starting to drop his pace. In the fight for the top ten, Savadori also suffered quite decided overtaken by Alex Lowes, who sportingly at the end of the race went in the box Iodaracing to apologize. The second part of the race, which is still a critical moment for the novice in the SBK class, was even more difficult in the last lap of the race when the Aprilia RSV4 RF number 32 had the technical issues which forced Savadori to lose three positions at the finish line. The Iodaracing and Aprilia engineers are now checking the bike to find the issues on Savadori bike.
Difficult race to Alex De Angelis. The San Marino rider is still not in a great shape after the injury in the warm-up race 2 at Assen, but in spite of the difficulties he finished the race by improving the result of Race 1, passing the finish line in fourteenth position. De Angelis, who started from the sixth row tried to finish the race despite the discomfort in his left hand due to the pain in his little finger, surged in the Netherlands for the rupture of the extensor tendon. The result of Imola does not meet the expectation from De Angelis which raced in Imola after 17 years, or the wild card made in the San Marino GP, the race of his debut in the World Championship. Filed the Imola race, De Angelis looks forward to the next race in Malaysia in two weeks time.
LORENZO SAVADORI # 32 - ROUND IMOLA - RACE 2 - ELEVENTH - "I made a good start which allowed me to insert myself right away in the first group, but from mid-race onwards still suffer a lot, but I have to say that today is gone even better than race 1. We certainly need to be able to improve following this line whereas the second part of the race is still our weak point but where we need to work even harder. Certainly these kinds of things are not resolved in a night, we need to work and I must say that both the Iodaracing Team and Aprilia are working very well. Obviously when you're in front of the group would be nice to stay there, however, I see the glass half full, we are growing constantly and this is the positive thing that helps us understand that we must continue on this path. my race was beautiful and full of duels. I enjoyed the sporting gesture by Alex Lowes who apologized for the hard overtake that made me when we were dueling, but it was not necessary, he was a sir. Unfortunately at the end of Race 2, the bike, since the "variante bassa" began to sob and we have lost a bit 'positions, otherwise I would have finished eighth. Now the engineers are testing the bike before making crates for Malaysia ".
ALEX DE ANGELIS #15 - ROUND IMOLA - RACE 2 - FOURTEENTH - "We played the card of soft rubber, but in the condition the track was in, it is ruined now, so I had to limit myself to finish the race. We are continuing to do experience preparing all well for the time I get physically better conditions. Of course I would have liked to do a different weekend, even considering the good races at Aragon and Assen, I hoped to end in Imola even in the top 10. Perhaps one of the difficulties we had was also due to lack of knowledge of the track in Imola, while the next Sepang track I know a lot more and there are also two long straights that could help our bike, so hopefully we can make up better in two weeks time in Malaysia. "Your text caption goes here. You can change the position of the caption and set styles in the block’s settings tab.
WorldSSP: Sofuoglu Takes Victory in Imola to Lead Championship
Krummenacher with technical problems in Italy
Kenan Sofuoglu has taken victory at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola in a race restarted after a red flag. Jules Cluzel came home in P2 after a late challenge, leading Honda rider PJ Jacobsen across the line to complete the podium.
Mixed conditions greeted the start of Sunday the 1st of May at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola. With rain overnight and grey skies overhead, Warm Up sessions got underway on a drying track and conditions were sure to be different for the Race. Jules Cluzel started from pole for MV Agusta Reparto Corse in their home race, ahead of Kawasaki Puccetti Racing rider Kenan Sofuoglu and Honda’s PJ Jacobsen on the front row. Rookie and Championship leader Randy Krummenacher started from P4 at the head of the second row, with teammate Sofuoglu starting to close down the points gap.
After a clean start, it was a familiar WorldSSP sight at the head of the train heading through Tamburello, with Cluzel leading Sofuoglu ahead of Krummenacher and Jacobsen on the chase. Soon, however, a problem became apparent on the Puccetti machine of Randy Krummenacher and the race was red-flagged, with the Swiss rider not allowed to take the restart.
Pit lane reopened at 11:45 for a new 11-lap race, with Cluzel leading off the line before Sofuoglu got past and began to pull away, leaving Jacobsen to lead the group hunting him down. Cluzel took some time to recover to his full pace as he struggled to keep P3 for a few laps, before pulling the pin once again to reel in Jacobsen and set off after old rival Sofuoglu. With only a handful of laps remaining, the Turk proved too far ahead despite Cluzel’s searing last two laps of the Imola circuit.
The Italian challenge was initially headed by Lorenzo Zanetti at home in Imola, as Cluzel’s MV Agusta teammate stayed close to his French rival throughout the race, with Alex Baldolini and Federico Caricasulo in equally close company. Alessandro Zaccone closed on the group however and was again the fastest rider forming part of the FIM Europe Supersport Cup, with the San Carlo Team Italia rider coming home in P5 to head the ESS challenge. Baldolini came across the line in P4 and Zanetti was forced to settle for a P6 finish at home, ahead of Ondrej Jezek. Federico Caricasulo and Ayrton Badovini crossed the line in P8 and P9 respectively, ahead of Spaniard Nico Terol who locked out the top ten.
Assen podium finisher Gino Rea was a high profile crasher in the race and luckily escaped from an incident at the final chicane, and Kyle Smith, winner in Holland, had a tough race to finish in P11 for CIA Landlord Insurance Honda.
Kenan Sofuoglu now leads the Championship after Round 5, with the next stop for WorldSSP being Sepang International Circuit.
Kenan Sofuoglu Kawasaki Puccetti Racing
Jules Cluzel MV Agusta Reparto Corse +1.429
PJ Jacobsen Honda World Supersport Team +3.013
Sofuoglu Wins At His Team’s Home Circuit
Kawasaki Puccetti Racing’s Kenan Sofuoglu took his second race win of the 2016 season with a start-to-finish domination of a shortened 11-lap race at the classic circuit of Imola - his team’s home round. His team-mate Randy Krummenacher hit misfortune when his bike started to leak water and Race Direction eventually prevented him from taking part in the restarted race. In the championship Sofuoglu is now first and Krummenacher second despite Randy’s Imola no score.
Another dramatic day in the history of WorldSSP racing unfolded at Imola after heavy overnight rain. A dry contest began at a high pace but after a leak of water from Krummenacher’s machine, and then another rider’s machine falling and being left in a dangerous position, the red flag was hung out to stop the race.
With Krummenacher not allowed to make the restart Sofuoglu was the lone Kawasaki Puccetti Racing rider and he rode a near faultless race to score a clear win, by 1.429 seconds from Jules Cluzel.
Sofuoglu had missed the Superpole win on Saturday by a small margin but had been on strong form since the first day of action at one of his favourite circuits. He has won three of the last four Imola races and has now grown his class leading total of WorldSSP career race wins to 34.
Kenan’s latest win lifted him to the championship lead today, with 86 points to his credit. His team-mate Krummenacher is second, with an unchanged 71 points. The next nearest championship challenger is Cluzel, 13 points behind Randy.
The next round takes place on Sunday 14 May, at the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia.
Kenan Sofuoglu stated: “I really believe we deserve this result. It was a very, very good weekend for us as we were always fastest, even in the wet. Only in Superpole was I not the fastest but I was just one lap late with my final push. We did a good job today at the home race for the team in Italy. I love Imola and I cannot say more because I am leading the championship again. We lost 25 points in Australia because of bad luck but this can happen in racing. Anyway we are back in the championship lead and I am very happy with today’s result.”
Randy Krummenacher stated: “The bike was running very well and I did not smell oil on the bike. The black and orange flag I saw without the number. Then I saw it for half a lap with the number 21. If I felt that I would bring the other riders in a dangerous position I would stop. But I did not feel that I would put them in danger. No one crashed because of me and they did not have to clean the track, because the water that was lost was a few drops – but it might have looked like a lot. I accept the Race Direction decision and let’s look forward to Malaysia.”
Alessandro Zaccone (San Carlo Team Italia Kawasaki) impressed again as the top ESS (part time) rider in the WorldSSP class; fifth overall today. GoEleven team rider Ondrej Jezek was seventh but his team-mate Christian Gamarino ended up a dramatic day out of the points. Illia Mikhalchik (DS Racing Kawasaki) was 13th and second in the ESS rankings. Another ESS rider, Axel Bassani (San Carlo Team Italia Kawasaki) placed 14th and scored two points at his home track.
Supersport - Victory in the European Cup and top-5 in World Championship for San Carlo Team Italia
Alessandro Zaccone is 5th on the finish line and conquer the second seasonal victory out of three races in FIM Europe Supersport Cup, Axel Bassani (14th) completes the 1-3 of the team.
At the Autodromo Internazionale 'Enzo e Dino Ferrari' of Imola, San Carlo Team Italia is once again on the top of FIM Europe Supersport Cup and with Alessandro Zaccone, 5th overall on the finish line and new leader of the class, proves again his potential also in the World Championship standings. To complete the performance of the team, Axel Bassani finishes this weekend with ups and downs with the 14th place (3rd in the European Cup), getting two points that place him in the second position of the championship.
In a shortened race, just 11 laps to do due to the red flag after the first start, Zaccone has done a great job in a group composed by riders with more experience in this class and has finished with the 5th place overall, the same result that he got at the MotorLand Aragón with the top-5 and the victory in the European cup. A remarkable performance of the Italian rider, at his second victory in FIM Europe Supersport Cup out of three races, who is gradually reducing the gap from Kenan Sofuoglu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), winner of today's race.
For Axel Bassani, the engagement and the determination that he showed to go beyond the difficulties on his path, have been awarded with the 14th place (3rd in ESS) and he's now second in the European standings with 20 points, at just 2 points from his teammate Zaccone. For San Carlo Team Italia the next round of FIM Europe Supersport Cup is at Donington Park (United Kingdom) in the weekend of 27th- 29th May.
Alessandro Zaccone (San Carlo Team Italia - Kawasaki ZX-6R #61)
1st FIM Europe Supersport Cup & 5th FIM Supersport World Championship
"A wonderful race! I didn't think that I could keep close with the riders of World Championship fighting for the podium, but this weekend the team worked very well and that's the result. I had a good feeling on the bike, I could ride as I like and the fifth place awards the work done this weekend. We missed just a little to battle for the podium of World Championship: with some more experience, I am sure that we can reach it during the season. The European Cup is still our main goal, now we are leader again and that's the best way to get back on track in few weeks at Donington Park."
Axel Bassani (San Carlo Team Italia - Kawasaki ZX-6R #47)
3rd FIM Europe Supersport Cup & 14th FIM Supersport World Championship
"We leave behind a very difficult weekend. I start behind and at the first start I didn't have the right feeling with the bike, I overshot the Variante Alta and I lost some precious time. At the second start I felt better, but not enough to recover positions. We got two points for the championship. Even though it was a problematical weekend, I want to thank the team that always gives its best to find a solution. We hope to do better at Donington Park."
"Today we saw an amazing Zaccone. We knew that on dry track he is fast, from his attitude in the first session of free practice of Friday, we understood that it could have been a weekend full of satisfaction. If at Assen the weather was against us, today we have been able to take advantage of the occasion, finishing the weekend with a fifth place overall. Alessandro rode very well, keeping a competitive pace from first to last lap and being always focused. With this result he's again the leader of the European cup and the team is 1st and 2nd in the standings,thanks to the two points of Bassani, sign that we're working well. From tomorrow we will think of Donington Park, but today we have plenty of reason to be satisfied."
"For Axel it was an uphill race and he wasn't able to express his best. He struggled especially in corners, a crucial point in this track. The positive thing is that in the last laps he had a good pace in line with the riders fighting for the fourth place, but he was too far to recover. The team will analyse the data of these three days in order to help Axel to prove his worth at Donington Park."
Smith 4th in Championship after difficult Imola weekend
Sun, 01 May 2016
CIA Landlord Insurance Honda’s Kyle Smith finished a disappointing 11th in the re-run 11 lap Supersport race at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Imola today following a weekend fraught with difficulty. Kyle suffered crashes in both free practice sessions and he never recovered from the loss of valuable set up time.
Kyle started the day 4th fastest in morning warm up on a drying track, but conditions were different again for the race and despite feeling comfortable on the bike, the lap times were eluding him. Kyle managed to salvage precious championship points and currently stands 4th in the World Supersport Championship.
It’s been a difficult weekend, the pace hasn’t been there from the beginning but we’ve come away with some points which is important. I’m looking forward to the next round in Sepang and hopefully we can get back to where we should be.”
Hikari Okubo finished in 20th position, Christoffer Bergman in 30th and the luckless Stefan Hill was knocked off by a crashed rider’s bike after seven laps, putting him out of the race.
CIA Landlord Insurance Honda Team Manager, Simon Buckmaster:
“Kyle has had a tough weekend. His crashes in FP1 and FP2 left him little track time for set up but he did the best he could and scored valuable championship points. Kyle was happy with the set up in the race but the lap times were not coming. We will consider everything and arrive at the next round in Malaysia in good shape.
We need to work harder with Hikari to help him to quickly learn new tracks. He will be in a better position at Sepang as he knows some of the circuit from his time in the Asian Championship so he will be looking for his first points finish there.
Stefan was unlucky in the race but fortunately he is ok and looking forward to the next race. Christoffer still tends to ride the bike like a stock 1000 but, as he has never ridden at Sepang before, this gives him a fresh opportunity to adapt his style.”
Jacobsen returns to podium ways with third place at Imola
Round 5 – Italy
Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Italy
PJ Jacobsen completed the podium of the fifth-round World Supersport race at Imola’s ‘Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari’. After a great launch from third place on the grid, the young American rider ran as high as second onboard the Honda WorldSSP Team’s CBR600RR machine and was clever to maintain his own pace in the final stages of the encounter, while keeping a decent margin on the five-way battle for fourth place that was raging behind him. With his second podium finish of 2016, Jacobsen is now sixth in the Championship standings, only three points shy of fourth.
The race, which got underway on time at 11:20, was red flagged on lap four after a crash involving Christian Gamarino, whose bike stopped in the middle of the track. One lap before, Krummenacher’s machine started to experience some technical problems; initially unaware of the smoke coming out of this bike, the Swiss rider kept circulating in third place just ahead of Jacobsen, who rode at safe distance to avoid any trouble. After the red flag was deployed, Krummenacher was declared unable to line up for the new 11-lap encounter.
The next race of the 2016 FIM Supersport World Championship will take place at Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia in a fortnight’s time.
Patrick Jacobsen 2
I’m so happy for today’s podium finish. The feeling I had with the bike was very good and I was able to ride it like I wanted, although unfortunately the dashboard wasn’t working and that made it all the more difficult. The team did a great job this weekend, and this third place is one small way to repay them for their efforts. This is a first step to building back some momentum, and I am now looking forward to racing at Sepang, where last year I got my first World Supersport win. Our focus has to be on one race at the time, without thinking too much of the championship battle.
PJ rode a great race; he was smart to back off after the first start, when Krummenacher’s bike broke down and then, with the restart, he kept a solid pace ad rode home to a podium finish, which is what we needed after the last two rounds. He looked very stable and comfortable onboard the Honda CBR600RR and we are happy with what he was able to achieve today. We take the positives out of the race and look forward to Malaysia, another track where both bike and rider have performed extremely well last year.
Lucky seven for Ondra Jezek
In spite of their being no "azzurro" sky and an interrupted race, Ondra Jezek achieved a season best result this weekend in Imola. The World Supersport contest was red flagged for the second week in a row though, unlike Assen, it at least restarted with a reasonable number of laps. A hard push in the final laps saw Ondra achieving 7th place which is the highest finish of any Czech rider ever in this premier class.
A 10th place grid position, secured during his direct access to Superpole 2 on the Saturday but with which he was slightly dissatisfied, was to be the starting point for Sundays race. After the first lap the green, black and silver Kawasaki was involved in a long train of riders powering through the wooded park lined track in the ninth position. Dropping back slightly to eleventh Andrej settled into a rhythm and a full length race strategy. Yet again however this was not to be as when Randy Krummenacher's bike dropped oil over the track, race direction red flagged the event. After the restart, the Team Go Eleven rider held ninth place for a while before setting to catch the Honda of Italian Ayrton Badovini in front of him, who after a small mistake had been quite distant. The last four rounds, however, formed a perfect charge and Ondrej passed not just him, but to the amazement and delight of the entire team, a full box of sponsors, guests and friends also another Italian, Federico Caricasulo, just before the final chicane. A 'Lucky Seven' finish from the track that Ondra likes so much means a shift into top ten of the overall series classification and hopefully continued success in the next race, to be held in Sepang, Malaysia.
Ondrej Jezek (7th place):
"We can only say: another great day at Imola! I was extremely satisfied with today´s race. Too bad that it was again "halved" by the red flag, when it goes longer, it suits me better. In the first part of the race we chose a harder compound SC1 tyre on the rear. It took a while before I got this rubber to optimum pace, but once I overtook Kyle Smith, I began to catch up with the main group fighting for fourth place. After that smoke appeared from Krummenacher´s bike and the race was stopped. For the second part we chose a softer SC0. It was a bit of a risk, because the restart was scheduled for 11 laps but the estimated life of the tires was up to 10. It was, however, a good choice as the second part of the race was much faster and it would have been difficult to keep up with the first group with the harder tyre. After a mistake in Variante Alta the group rode away from me, and then it was difficult to get closer. But I managed to reach and overtake Badovini. In the last laps I finally caught the opponents in front of me and in the final part of the race overtook Caricasulo, who had a slight problem with the electronics. Seventh place in the race, moving into the top 10 in the overall rankings, excellent team work throughout the weekend. I evaluate it positively and am looking forward to Sepang."
Imola Day 3:
P1 - Chaz Davies @chazdavies
Aruba.it Racing - Ducati @ArubaRacing
"I’ll take that! What a mega weekend. I came here thinking that it was going to be a really tough track for keeping up with our main rivals at Kawasaki. Given their history, they have always been really strong here and Johnny has always been really strong here. I am so proud of the work Ducati have done, giving me such a complete package now. I feel like I can fight for these wins at every circuit, not just the odd circuit here and there. Credit to them, what a result for them at their home race, top step twice, fastest laps and pole. It’s a gentleman’s set I believe."
P2 - Jonathan Rea @jonathanrea
Kawasaki Racing Team @KRT_WorldSBK
"In a few places we were still having the same recurring problem but we changed the complete engine character of the bike, so with the harder tyre I was starting to feel good again. I don’t know what happened but when I was on the straight here in fifth gear the dashboard switched off and the bike switched off and I thought ‘no way, this is the end of my race’. Then I made a shift back to fourth gear, everything came alive again and the lights were going. Maybe the engine management went to sleep for a few minutes! I rejoined but I couldn’t catch the same rhythm again, because after the moment I had on the chicane I landed and completely bent the back brake. But I’m really happy because it seems like we have found a good direction. Congratulations to Chaz because he was really strong here and we had no answer."
P3 - Tom Sykes @TheRealTomSykes
Kawasaki Racing Team @KRT_WorldSBK
"I’m a little bit disappointed because we definitely had the speed to go for second. But unfortunately when I was battling with Jonathan I really started to struggle on some corners. His ZX-10R was where I wanted to put mine. Like on the last lap we had maybe half a second gap to Jonathan, I was able to put the bike where I wanted to and the lap time was very good again. So that’s my only concern from that race, it looks like when we are battling and we are not able to do what we would want on a free track the lap time suffers. So I’m happy, third is third, I don’t like making excuses and for the next race we know where to look. We know where we have to improve and we have to keep smiling because we are consistently on the podium now. The next step is to try and be more comfortable and try to fight for the win."
P4 - Davide Giugliano @DavideGiugliano
Aruba.it Racing - Ducati @ArubaRacing
"I was more competitive in Race 2. I had one or two problems over the first four or five laps with the grip of the rear tyre, but after the first laps I was very fast and similar to Tom, so I'm very happy about that."
WorldSSP: Sofuoglu Takes Victory in Imola
P1 - Kenan Sofuoglu - @kenan_sofuoglu
Kawasaki Puccetti Racing
"We had two races and in the first race I could really understand that I had the fastest pace and I was just watching Jules. But then when I took the lead the race stopped. In the second race it was very clear, I just got away. In the end Jules (Cluzel) stuck closely and I was looking at how many laps there were left to go, thinking how much can we take. We managed it and I’m very happy with the result because I needed these 25 points. Now we are the leader of the championship and now hopefully we can constantly continue like this as there is a long season in front of us. It’s still the beginning and we still have to work hard to manage the championship."