Results and summary of World Superbike race 1 at Silverstone:
Carlos Checa has taken victory in the first World Superbike race at Silverstone, beating Eugene Laverty and Marco Melandri by a comfortable margin, and extending his championship lead over Max Biaggi to 50 points.
It was Eugene Laverty who got the holeshot, entering the first turn ahead of polesitter John Hopkins, while Checa capitalized on a mistake by Leon Camier to take 3rd. But Checa's 3rd place would last for just half a lap, with Noriyuki Haga getting past the Althea Ducati easily as they entered the complex at Maggotts. Marco Melandri sat right behind Checa, while Leon Haslam brought up the rear of the group of 6 which had broken away early. Their break had been assisted by a crash by Michel Fabrizio, the Alstare Suzuki rider highsiding at copse and causing Leon Camier and and Max Biaggi to swerve and a gap to form.
Laverty led the early laps, while Carlos Checa scrapped with Haga over the right to chase the Yamaha rider down once they had disposed of John Hopkins. It took him several attempts, but eventually Checa got past the Pata Aprilia rider at Village - his favorite passing place - and opened the hunt for the Irishman who led the race. Checa's pace was immediately apparent, closing a gap over over half a second in a couple of laps, and swooping underneath Laverty at Village on lap 6. Once he was past, the race was effectively over, Checa quickly pulling a 2 second lead and controlling the race from the front. The Althea Ducati rider took the win completely unchallenged. Though Eugene Laverty's pace dropped off once Checa was past, the Yamaha rider was challenged only once before the end of the race, eventually coming home in 2nd with a clear gap.
The final spot on the podium was a far more hard-fought affair. John Hopkins looked to be in with a shout for the first part of the race, aided in no small part by Nori Haga crashing out on lap 7. But Leon Camier was on a mission, closing down the leading group in the first half of the race, then picking his way through the leaders to get into a spot on the podium. He had to fend off some very stiff resistance from both Hopkins and Marco Melandri, but by lap 10, he was clear to chase down Laverty.
Just as he was in position to launch an attack for 2nd, disaster struck, a mechanical problem causing the Alitalia Aprilia rider to pull up and abandon his attempts to pass Laverty. Camier could continue to lap, but he was now 30+ seconds a lap slower, eventually crossing the line in 15th and with a single point, but disappointed at not being able to secure more.
Camier's problems handed Marco Melandri the final spot on the podium, allowing the Italian to limit the loss of points to Carlos Checa, while making up useful points on the man he is fighting for 2nd in the championship, Max Biaggi. Leon Haslam sneaked past John Hopkins with three laps to go to take over 4th, pushing Hopkins into 5th, still an impressive performance from the wildcard rider on the Samsung Crescent Suzuki.
Max Biaggi, meanwhile, had a nightmare of a race, his Aprilia sliding and running wide at almost every corner. The reigning World Champion ended the race in lowly 11th, conceding 20 points to Carlos Checa and 11 points to Marco Melandri. Checa now extends his lead to 50 points, or 2 full races, with just 9 races left to go in the championship. And given the ease with which Checa took victory at Silverstone in race 1, both Biaggi and Melandri must fear losing more points in the second race of the day later in the afternoon.
|1||7||C. CHECA||ESP||Ducati 1098R|
|2||58||E. LAVERTY||IRL||Yamaha YZF R1||3.304|
|3||33||M. MELANDRI||ITA||Yamaha YZF R1||4.782|
|4||91||L. HASLAM||GBR||BMW S1000 RR||7.116|
|5||211||J. HOPKINS||USA||Suzuki GSX-R1000||11.057|
|6||50||S. GUINTOLI||FRA||Ducati 1098R||21.899|
|7||17||J. LASCORZ||ESP||Kawasaki ZX-10R||22.308|
|8||121||M. BERGER||FRA||Ducati 1098R||22.734|
|9||11||T. CORSER||AUS||BMW S1000 RR||25.491|
|10||86||A. BADOVINI||ITA||BMW S1000 RR||25.725|
|11||1||M. BIAGGI||ITA||Aprilia RSV4 Factory||25.844|
|12||52||J. TOSELAND||GBR||BMW S1000 RR||45.578|
|13||44||R. ROLFO||ITA||Kawasaki ZX-10R||51.650|
|14||10||J. KIRKHAM||GBR||Suzuki GSX-R1000||57.310|
|15||2||L. CAMIER||GBR||Aprilia RSV4 Factory||1'36.457|
|RET||32||F. LAI||ITA||Honda CBR1000RR||6 Laps|
|RET||8||M. AITCHISON||AUS||Kawasaki ZX-10R||8 Laps|
|RET||41||N. HAGA||JPN||Aprilia RSV4 Factory||9 Laps|
|RET||96||J. SMRZ||CZE||Ducati 1098R||12 Laps|
|RET||22||A. LOWES||GBR||Honda CBR1000RR||13 Laps|
|RET||84||M. FABRIZIO||ITA||Suzuki GSX-R1000|