2018 Portimao World Supersport Race Results: Wait, What?

World Superport round ten of thirteen opened with Sandro Cortese five points ahead of Jules Cluzel and the top six all within thirty five points. Five of the top six challengers are on a Yamaha R6 and seventh placed Ant West is over fifty points off the top six, eighty seven points off the title leader, and won't be taking part this weekend. 

Lucas Mahias started on pole position, alongside his GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team teammate Federico Caricasulo with championship leader Sandro Cortese in third place. Cluzel took the lead outside Mahias at turn one while Federico Caricasulo got a terrible start and was swallowed by faster starters. Caricasulo fought back from seventh place, slicing under two riders at once to get to fifth position and start the second lap in fourth place. 

On the second lap, Lucas Mahias took first place cleanly off his fellow Frenchman and Cortese in third place tried to pass Cluzel but he overestimated his grip and the front tucked, putting his bike flat on the track and lifting Cluzel's front wheel on the way, taking them both out of contention. Cluzel's bike travelled a lot further than the furious rider who gesticulated at the race as it charged off into the distance. He dropped to his knees and pounded the run-off like Charlton Heston in Planet Of The Apes.

To make Cluzel's colère worse, Cortese was able to remount and quickly get up to eighteenth position. GRT Yamaha pitboards were held out with upside down CLU and CORT on them to show the leaders that the championship rivals were out.

Lucas Mahias set the fastest lap on lap two, with Federico Caricasulo benefiting greatly from the Cortese incident in second place. Kyle Smith and Raffaele De Rosa battled for third place in a fight that would see them to the end, ahead of Randy Krummenacher who had a massive gap behind him to the fight for sixth place. 

As the race went on, the positions at the front stabilised, with De Rosa breaking free from Smith's clutches only for Smith to close up towards the end of the race, passing him on lap sixteen. Sandro Cortese scythed his way through the pack and eventually ended up only ten seconds off fifth placed Randy Krummenacher. 

And then, the last lap happened.

Lucas Mahias crossed the line to start lap eighteen over two seconds clear of Federico Caricasulo who was comfortably settled in second place, over four seconds clear of Kyle Smith. However, Mahias shook his head and looked down. He had a puncture.

Mahias slowly pulled off the track as the race overtook him. A yellow flag was shown, then a red as Rob Hartog launched himself into the rear wheel of Borja Quero Martinez, earning himself a disqualification and ending the race.

The results were then rolled back to the last complete lap and a result was called, with Lucas Mahias taking the win.

Or, that would be the case if he could make it back to the pits in five minutes. With a flat rear tyre. All the way around the track. Lucas Mahias started a long and dangerous ride on a flat rear tyre. In the pitman, as the clock ticked down, Federico Caricasulo, Kyle Smith and Raffaele De Rosa were held off from Parc Fermé until the top spot was decided.

Mahias dropped his Yamaha, picked it back up and kept going, dropping it again before he knocked a couple of traffic cones over, taking a short cut across an escape road and incredibly limping his bike back to the pits. 

The results were in. The winner? Federico Caricasulo.

Lucas Mahias lost his twenty five points for not using the track to get back, as a slip road isn't part of a live track. The puncture cost him the win, but a short-cut cost him a second chance.

Federico Caricasulo's win is his second of the year and the twenty five points put him level with Randy Krummenacher twenty points off the top and third in the championship. Kyle Smith's second place is his first podium of the year and the first in almost two years. His twenty points leapfrog him to seventh place and Raffaele De Rosa's third place puts him in fifth place ahead of Lucas Mahias in the title chase. Sandro Cortese's fifth place increases his lead over Jules Cluzel to sixteen points.

The rules were applied correctly, but both Jules Cluzel and Lucas Mahias may come away from the weekend thinking that Marianne must have walked under a ladder.

Results:

Pos No. Rider Bike Gap
1 64 F. CARICASULO Yamaha YZF R6  
2 111 K. SMITH Honda CBR600RR 5.784
3 3 R. DE ROSA MV Agusta F3 675 6.199
4 21 R. KRUMMENACHER Yamaha YZF R6 9.581
5 11 S. CORTESE Yamaha YZF R6 20.419
6 38 H. SOOMER Honda CBR600RR 22.605
7 86 A. BADOVINI MV Agusta F3 675 23.787
8 36 T. GRADINGER Yamaha YZF R6 25.004
9 78 H. OKUBO Kawasaki ZX-6R 25.009
10 98 H. BARBERA Kawasaki ZX-6R 29.862
11 81 L. STAPLEFORD Yamaha YZF R6 31.630
12 70 M. PONS Kawasaki ZX-6R 40.423
13 74 J. VAN SIKKELERUS Honda CBR600RR 44.207
14 88 C. STANGE Kawasaki ZX-6R 45.273
15 49 S. HORNSEY Triumph Daytona 675 53.436
16 34 J. ITURRIOZ Kawasaki ZX-6R 57.876
17 50 K. NAGAO Kawasaki ZX-6R 58.096
18 15 A. COPPOLA ESS 1'48.213 268,9
RET 77 W. TESSELS Kawasaki ZX-6R 16
RET 6 C. PEROLARI Yamaha YZF R6 3 Laps
RET 10 N. CALERO Kawasaki ZX-6R 4 Laps
RET 12 A. MURLEY Honda CBR600RR 6 Laps
RET 75 I. LOPES Yamaha YZF R6 9 Laps
RET 56 P. SEBESTYEN Honda CBR600RR 11 Laps
RET 16 J. CLUZEL Yamaha YZF R6 15 Laps
DSQ 47 R. HARTOG Kawasaki ZX-6R 31.530
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Round Number: 
10
2018
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Total votes: 30

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