SILVERSTONE, Great Britain – Typically British mixed weather welcomed the eni FIM Superbike Championship for round nine race day at Silverstone on Sunday. A busy schedule gave fans plenty of spectacular action to watch and delivered unpredictable results, along with some of the most thrilling battles witnessed so far this year.
Jonathan Rea (Pata Honda World Superbike) won race one of Superbike in spectacular fashion. The Brit got back on the top step of the podium after more than a year, as his previous win dated back to 2012 (Donington Park race one). Rea pulled away from the chasing pack on lap seven, as rain started to fall heavier on the track.
The race was reduced by one lap due to the delayed start and was characterized by intermittent conditions that played a key factor and brought constant and unpredictable position changes throughout the 17 laps. Eugene Laverty (Aprilia Racing Team) managed to get back in contention for the podium in the closing stages, to edge Leon Camier from second place during the final lap. Camier delivered his and FIXI Crescent Suzuki Team’s first podium of the season on his 27th birthday.
Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia Racing Team), fourth at the flag, managed to extend his leadership in the points up to 12 points, as his main rival for the title Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) ended up 11th behind BMW Motorrad GoldBet duo of Marco Melandri and Chaz Davies. Guintoli was able to defend his position from fellow Frenchmen Loris Baz (Kawasaki Racing Team) and Jules Cluzel (FIXI Crescent Suzuki), both able to stay with the frontrunners and to battle for the podium.
“Race one was probably one of the sweetest victories of my career because to ride out-front in those conditions was quite scary,” Rea said. “I was so happy for the whole team and our sponsors, but I had to be very cautious. I also had to be smart and, as I saw the gap heading into the last few laps, I didn’t want to be throwing away that kind of lead.”
Baz won an epic race two at Silverstone. The Frenchman was leading during the final lap when the red flag was waved, as the rain suddenly increased and two riders fell off at Stowe corner.
One of the two involved was Cluzel: the Suzuki rider managed to rejoin and make it back to the pits, sealing a fantastic maiden podium finish as the results reverted back to the previous lap, when he was running second.
Baz, on the other hand, was able to shine again on the English track that saw him get his first ever WSBK win one year ago.
Laverty ended in third place, ahead of Rea and Camier, who had his shot at the lead before losing several positions during the incredible seven-way battle that characterized the second part of the race.
Guintoli, thanks to a sixth place finish ahead of Championship contender Sykes keeps the lead in the standings with a 13-point gap over the Brit.
Potential podium finisher Davies had to retire from the race due to a technical problem on lap 15, when he was in the mix up front.
“I want to say thanks my team because they are making a really good job with this bike for not just Tom or me but for both riders,” Baz said. “After race one I was really disappointed because I was fighting for the podium but maybe I was thinking too much about this and made a lot of mistakes, so I finished fifth. In race two I said to myself, ‘OK, this one is mine.’
“In the first part of the race, even in the dry, I had good pace and I pushed at the front. I tried to control the pace from the front but there were some fast people behind me and it was difficult to go away. Every time somebody tried to pass me I passed them back and at the end the conditions were really wet and I nearly fell.”
Kenan Sofuoglu (Mahi Racing Team India Kawasaki) took the victory in Sunday’s World Supersport race, following what was a classic battle with Championship leader Sam Lowes (Yakhnich Motorsport Yamaha). Both pulled away from the rest of the field in the first part of the race, but it wasn’t until the last lap that the real fight for the win took place, as they swapped positions several times until a collision at turn 14 left Lowes on the ground.
While Sofuoglu crossed the line a lonely winner, Lowes was able to rejoin – thanks to the big gap – and to finish second.
Fabien Foret (Mahi Racing Team India Kawasaki) was able to snatch third place on the finish line from Kev Coghlan (DMC Lorenzini Kawasaki) and ParkinGo MV Agusta Corse duo of Christian Iddon and Roberto Rolfo.
Sylvain Barrier (BMW Motorrad GoldBet) scored his fourth race win of the season after the first Superstock 1000 race of the day was red flagged on the final lap, following the crash by Jaroslav Cerny (SK Energy – Fany Gastro Ducati), substitute rider for Tomas Svitok. As the final results reverted back to the previous lap, Jeremy Guarnoni (MRS Kawasaki) finished second, even though he was leading the action before the race was stopped.
Barrier was a lonely winner in Superstock 1000 Cup race two. The Frenchman started increasing his margin over the following riders halfway through the race, crossing the line with almost four seconds over Leandro Mercado (Team Pedercini Kawasaki) and 5.7 seconds on third place Lorenzo Savadori.
Thanks to his fifth win out of seven races, Barrier extended his lead in the standings to 36 points on Niccolo Canepa (Barni Racing Ducati) and 55 on Guarnoni.
Christian Gamarino (Team Goeleven Kawasaki) achieved a memorable first ever victory in the second STK600 race at Silverstone, which was dedicated to departed team mate Andrea Antonelli. The Italian defended the first position up to the finish line from Bastien Chesaux (EAB Ten Kate Junior Team Honda) as both riders managed to pull away from the rest of the field in the early stages.
A shortened Superstock 600 race one on Saturday was won by Alessandro Nocco (San Carlo Team Italia Kawasaki) as the Italian rider was leading when the red flag came out on lap seven, after the collision that involved Swiss Bastien Chesaux (EAB Ten Kate Junior Honda) and Gauthier Duwelz (MTM-MVR Racing Yamaha), causing the Belgian to crash on the main straight.
As the final results were based on the positioning at the end of lap six, Christian Gamarino (Team Goeleven Kawasaki) scored an incredible podium finish – and best career result so far – ahead of Chesaux and Franco Morbidelli (San Carlo Team Italia Kawasaki), new leader in the points
Jake Lewis (Jake Lewis Racing) won Sunday’s Pata European Junior Cup, powered by Honda, race at Silverstone. The Kiwi was in first place at the end of lap five, the last one completed as on the sixth lap the race was red flagged following the crashes by Illan Fernandez (Evo Kids Racing), Adrien Pittet (Swisscare) and Peter Sebastyen (World Management). James Flitcroft (Nova Caravans) and Richard Bodis (Sparta Motorsport) completed the podium.
World Superbike Race One Results
1.Jonathan Rea (Honda) 17 Laps/100.334km in 37:16.058 (161.535km/h)
2. Eugene Laverty (Aprilia) +3.073
3. Leon Camier (Suzuki) +3.480
4. Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia) +3.608
5. Loris Baz (Kawasaki) +4.140
6. Jules Cluzel (Suzuki) +5.659
7. Leon Haslam (Honda) +6.443
8. Ayrton Badovini (Ducati) +10.544
9. Marco Melandri (BMW) +14.017
10. Chaz Davies (BMW) +14.167
11. Tom Sykes (Kawasaki) +14.180
12. Max Neukirchner (Ducati) +26.536
13. Carlos Checa (Ducati) +43.561
14. Michel Fabrizio (Aprilia) +46.373
15. Mark Aitchison (Kawasaki) +1:33.624
16. Federico Sandi (Kawasaki) +1 Lap
17. Vittorio Iannuzzo (BMW) +2 Laps
RT. Davide Giugliano (Aprilia).
World Superbike Race Two Results
1.Loris Baz (Kawasaki) 16 Laps/94.432km in 33:46.622 (167.745km/h)
2. Jules Cluzel (Suzuki) +0.609
3. Eugene Laverty (Aprilia) +0.869
4. Jonathan Rea (Honda) +2.145
5. Leon Camier (Suzuki) +2.229
6. Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia) +2.374
7. Tom Sykes (Kawasaki) +5.791
8. Ayrton Badovini (Ducati) +20.126
9. Marco Melandri (BMW) +20.209
10. Carlos Checa (Ducati) +20.629
11. Michel Fabrizio (Aprilia) +20.769
12. Max Neukirchner (Ducati) +21.407
13. Federico Sandi (Kawasaki) +45.015
14. Mark Aitchison (Kawasaki) +45.938
15. Davide Giugliano (Aprilia) +46.036
16. Vittorio Iannuzzo (BMW) +1:22.207
RT. Leon Haslam (Honda)
RT. Chaz Davies (BMW).
World Superbike Standings – provisional (round 9 of 15)*
1.Sylvain Guintoli 262
2. Tom Sykes 249
3. Eugene Laverty 226
4. Marco Melandri 221
5. Chaz Davies 180
6. Loris Baz 180
7. Jonathan Rea 176
8. Michel Fabrizio 138
9. Leon Camier 114
10. Jules Cluzel 113
11. Davide Giugliano 100
12. Ayrton Badovini 91
13. Max Neukirchner 77
14. Carlos Checa 68
15. Leon Haslam 51
* Possible updated results could be defined by the International Disciplinary Court which is dealing with the appeal lodged by Aprilia Racing Team and rider Sylvain Guintoli, following the decision taken by the FIM Stewards in Monza (Italian Round, May 12) to cancel the drop of position sanction (from third to fourth place in race two) imposed by the Race Direction on rider Tom Sykes