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May 26, 2002

Bayliss Beats Edwards And Xaus In Race Two At Silverstone

Copyright 2002, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc.<BR><BR>By Glenn LeSanto<BR><BR>Bayliss sails to another victory in high water<BR><BR>World Champion Troy Bayliss fought off a strong challenge by Colin Edwards to take win number nine of the 2002 World Superbike Season, int he second race at Silverstone.<BR><BR>Although the race started wet, the conditions were slightly improved over race one. This caused problems for many riders who had chosen a 'very wet' set-up over merely a wet set-up, running full rain tires instead of intermediates. Neil Hodgson and Noriyuki Haga were both victims of such a tire choice. They selected rain tires to combat aquaplaning, something many riders suffered earlier in the day. The choice proved a poor one, as the rain tapered off late in the race and the track dried slightly. Hodgson dropped back to sixth after an early charge and Haga finished 10th after battling for the lead at the start of the race.<BR><BR>As Bayliss and Edwards took to the front a battle developed behind them between a gaggle of British riders. Ruben Xaus escaped this battle to take third, a welcome result for a rider who has suffered from indifferent results at the last few races. The battle behind for fourth continued between Michael Rutter, Shane Byrne, Chris Walker and Neil Hodgson.<BR><BR>For a while it was British Superbikes year 2000 all over again as Hodgson and Walker engaged in some frighteningly close racing. It looked like it would end in tears as neither rider showed any intention of giving way. But as the track dried, Hodgson's tire choice began to play its part and he dropped back to finish sixth. But Walker kept the pressure on for a brilliant fourth.<BR><BR>Rutter, normally such an expert in poor conditions, pushed too hard and crashed out on lap eight while battling for fourth. Shane Byrne kept it together to finish fifth.<BR><BR>Ben Bostrom, who doesn't enjoy wet weather racing at all, didn't have such a good race, finishing eighth. His brother Eric had an even harder time in the wet, coming home 16th.<BR><BR>Edwards put some late pressure on Bayliss, and for a while it looked like he might be able to break the champion's run of form for the second time in one day. He nosed ahead for two laps but Bayliss did what he seems to be able to do with apparent ease this year, he turned up the wick and disappeared for another win.<BR><BR>Silverstone World Superbike Race Two Results:<BR><BR>1. Troy Bayliss, Ducati, 20 laps<BR>2. Colin Edwards, Honda, -4.909 seconds<BR>3. Ruben Xaus, Ducati<BR>4. Chris Walker, Kawasaki<BR>5. Shane Byrne, Ducati<BR>6. Neil Hodgson, Ducati<BR>7. Juan Borja, Ducati<BR>8. Ben Bostrom, Ducati<BR>9. James Toseland, Ducati<BR>10. Noriyuki Haga, Aprilia<BR>11. Pierfrancesco Chili, Ducati<BR>12. Broc Parkes, Ducati<BR>13. Alessandro Antonello, Ducati<BR>14. Gregorio Lavilla, Suzuki<BR>15. Peter Goddard, Benelli<BR>16. Eric Bostrom, Kawasaki<BR><BR>Mark Heckles, Honda, DNF<BR>Steve Hislop, Ducati, DNF<BR>Michael Rutter, Ducati, DNF