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Aug 31, 2013

Ducati's Badovini Wins Wet World Superbike Superpole At Nurburgring (Updated)

eni FIM Superbike World Championship: Ayrton Badovini (86).
eni FIM Superbike World Championship
Nurburgring, Germany
August 31, 2013
Qualifying Results, After Superpole (wet conditions, all on Pirelli tires):

1. Ayrton BADOVINI, Italy (Ducati 1199 Panigale R), 2:09.513
2. Marco MELANDRI, Italy (BMW S1000RR), 2:09.616
3. Tom SYKES, UK (Kawasaki ZX-10R), 2:10.136, crash
4. Loris BAZ, France (Kawasaki ZX-10R), 2:10.401
5. Jonathan REA, UK (Honda CBR1000RR), 2:11.204
6. Leon HASLAM, UK (Honda CBR1000RR), 2:12.006
7. Chaz DAVIES, UK (BMW S1000RR), 2:12.663, crash
8. Sylvain GUINTOLI, France (Aprilia RSV4 Factory), 2:13.177
9. Jules CLUZEL, France (Suzuki GSX-R1000), 2:14.454, crash


From Superpole Session One:

10. Max NEUKIRCHNER, Germany (Ducati 1199 Panigale R), 2:15.975
11. Leon CAMIER, UK (Suzuki GSX-R1000), 2:16.393
12. Eugene LAVERTY, Ireland (Aprilia RSV4 Factory), 2:16.409
13. Michel FABRIZIO, Italy (Aprilia RSV4 Factory), 2:16.660
14. Davide GIUGLIANO, Italy (Aprilia RSV4 Factory), 2:18.775
15. Matej SMRZ, Czech Republic (Yamaha YZF-R1), 2:19.277


The Rest of the Grid:

16. Mark AITCHISON, Australia (Kawasaki ZX-10R), 1:56.344
17. Markus REITERBERGER, Germany (BMW S1000RR), 1:56.362
18. Carlos CHECA, Spain (Ducati 1199 Panigale R), 1:56.451
19. Federico SANDI, Italy (Kawasaki ZX-10R), 1:57.482
20. Vittorio IANNUZZO, Italy (BMW S1000RR), 1:58.409




More, from a press release issued by SBK Press Office:

Ayrton Badovini gets maiden Tissot-Superpole win

Nurburgring (Germany), Saturday 31 August 2013 - Ayrton Badovini (Team Ducati Alstare) scored a long awaited Tissot-Superpole win today at the Nurburgring, bringing the 1199 R on the top slot of the grid for the second time this year, after Carlos Checa's performance in the first round of the season at Phillip Island. As drops of rain started to fall few minutes before the start, the Tissot-Superpole was held under wet rules, with two sessions of 20 minutes each. Badovini seemed very comfortable under this type of conditions and led both Superpole 1 and 2 for the joy of team owner Francis Batta and his squad.

The battle for the front row positions for tomorrow's two races was very close, and Badovini had to push hard to outperform fellow Italian Marco Melandri (BMW Motorrad GolBet), who was second at the flag ahead of Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team). The Brit managed to get an encouraging result despite a crash he had, in the final minutes, at Turn 3.

Despite his usual confidence under rain conditions, Sykes' team mate Loris Baz was fourth ahead of Pata Honda duo of Jonathan Rea and Leon Haslam. Even leader in qualifying Chaz Davies (BMW Motorrad GolBet), seventh, lost control of his bike during the second session, as well as ninth place Jules Cluzel who high-sided at the first turn while accelerating to exit the corner. Championship leader Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia Racing Team) finished between the two above-mentioned riders in eighth place.
A disappointing Superpole for the other factory Aprilia rider Eugene Laverty, who's going to start tomorrow's races from the fourth row of the grid, after finishing twelfth behind Max Neukirchner (MR-Racing Ducati) and Leon Camier (FIXI Crescent Suzuki).

Tissot-Superpole times: 1. Badovini (Ducati) 2'09.513 average 142.790 kph; 2. Melandri (BMW) 2'09.616; 3. Sykes (Kawasaki) 2'10.136; 4. Baz (Kawasaki) 2'10.401; 5. Rea (Honda) 2'11.204; 6. Haslam (Honda) 2'12.006; 7. Davies (BMW) 2'12.663; 8. Guintoli (Aprilia) 2'13.177; 9. Cluzel (Suzuki) 2'14.454; 10. Neukirchner (Ducati); 11. Camier (Suzuki); 12. Laverty (Aprilia); 13. Fabrizio (Aprilia); 14. Giugliano (Aprilia); 15. Smrz (Yamaha).

Superstock 1000

Sylvain Barrier (BMW Motorrad GoldBet) achieved his 15th career STK1000 pole position – his seventh of the season - today at the Nurburgring, after leading the way at the end of Qualifying 2. The Reigning Champion and current leader in the points, who has a first match point for title defence this weekend, set a 1'58.624 seconds time that meant also a new best lap for the class. Jeremy Guarnoni... (read more)

Times: 1. Barrier (BMW) 1'58.624 average 155.898 kph; 2. Guarnoni (Kawasaki) 1'58.686; 3. Canepa (Ducati) 1'58.882; 4. Mercado (Kawasaki) 1'59.051; 5. Lussiana (Kawasaki) 1'59.295; 6. Jezek (Ducati) 1'59.503; 7. Bergman (Kawasaki) 1'59.505; 8. Lanusse (Kawasaki) 1'59.538; 9. Gildenhuys (BMW) 1'59.604; 10. Savadori (Kawasaki) 1'59.717; etc.
European Junior Cup

The Pata European Junior Cup, powered by Honda pole position for the German Round went to points leader Jake Lewis (Jake Lewis Racing), who was able to lap the Nurburgring track in 2'19.230 onboard his CBR500R. The young rider from New Zealand got the better of Italian Michael Canducci (Colors Experience) and Frenchman Guillaume Raymond (Activbike), second and third respectively. Robin Anne (Anne Formation) finished in fourth position ahead of returning Dutchman Bo Bendsneijder (RT Racing Support).

Times: 1. Lewis (Honda) 2'19.230 average 132.825 kph; 2. Canducci (Honda) 2'19.746; 3. Raymond (Honda) 2'19.786; 4. Anne (Honda) 2'19.936; 5. Bendsneijder (Honda) 2'20.087; 6. Manfredi (Honda) 2'20.173; 7. Fernandez (Honda) 2'20.335; 8. Bodis (Honda) 2'20.357; 9. Croft (Honda) 2'20.417; 10. Flitcroft (Honda) 2'20.701; etc.




More, from a press release issued by Team SBK Ducati Alstare:

Badovini and Team SBK Ducati Alstare celebrate pole position today at the Nurburgring

Nurburgring (Germany), Saturday 31 August 2013: at the end of an extremely hard-fought Superpole, which took place in wet conditions today at the German Nurburgring, it was Ayrton Badovini and Team SBK Ducati Alstare who snatched pole position this afternoon, the second pole of the season for the team and the first of Badovini’s career in the Superbike category.

In second qualifying, which took place this morning on a cooler track than yesterday (18°C), Badovini was able to improve significantly on yesterday’s times, lowering his best time by more than a second to record a 1’55.0 that projected him into tenth position. A small crash in the final stages caused him to lose valuable time but he nevertheless maintained tenth position. Carlos, having lost all of yesterday afternoon’s session due to a crash, worked hard with his technicians but unfortunately his fastest lap was not enough to qualify for the Superpole. The Spaniard will thus line up for tomorrow’s race in eighteenth position on the grid.

Conditions were cloudy but dry for the final free practice session in the early afternoon. Carlos made slight improvement thanks to modifications made by his team prior to the session and closed fourteenth while Badovini lapped with fairly constant times to conclude twelfth.

Superpole 1 (wet): It started to rain just minutes before the start of the session. Ayrton immediately found himself up front and remained inside the top five for the duration of the phase. The lap times of all riders gradually dropped throughout the session but it was the Ducati Alstare flagbearer who finished first with a fastest lap recorded in the final seconds (2’13.4).

Superpole 2 (wet): It had practically stopped raining by the time the second phase got going. At his ease on the extremely wet track, Ayrton again pushed hard to record some very fast lap times. Times again came down despite the fact that the track was becoming increasingly slippery. The fight with Melandri for pole position came down to the wire and it was Badovini’s very last lap that awarded him the pole position. Thanks to a time of 2’09.5, the young Italian snatched not only his first pole of the season but the first of his Superbike career!

Ayrton Badovini: “I’m really happy with the result. I knew that if it was wet we’d have the chance to qualify on the front row but I didn’t expect to be on pole, it’s fantastic! Towards the end of the second phase the track was getting more and more slippery, it was risky but I wanted to give it my all, to see if we could finish on top and we did it. In those kind of conditions, the union between my 1199 Panigale and my ability in the wet works perfectly. I’m enjoying this moment; this result is for the team that has worked so hard since the start of the season. We haven’t formulated a strategy for the races yet but to start out in front will surely be an advantage.”

Carlos Checa: “We’ve been trying a few different things since testing in Misano but I haven’t yet found the right feeling with the bike here at the Nurburgring. The crash yesterday didn’t help matters of course, as I lost both a lot of time and confidence. I can’t say exactly what the problem is. I need to be able to ride the bike more smoothly; it’s hard to make it turn through the corners. It’s clear that we need different weight distribution here. I hope that, between today and tomorrow, we can find a solution that can help us in the races. My compliments to Ayrton for a great Superpole today.”




More, from a press release issued by Kawasaki:

Sykes On The Front Row And Baz Just One Behind In Nürburgring Superpole

WSBK, Nürburgring, Germany, 31 August 2013

Tom Sykes and Loris Baz took their KRT Ninja ZX-10Rs to third and fourth grid placings respectively after a two part wet Superpole contest in the tenth round of the Championship at the Nürburgring.

Baz was third fastest in combined qualifying; Sykes was sixth, with all the sessions before Superpole held in dry conditions. When the rains arrived shortly before Superpole was about to start each KRT rider made it through Superpole one and into Superpole two; then each worked well to earn good starting places for Sunday’s two SBK races, even after the track had become fully wet and greasy in places.

Sykes had a small crash right at the end of Superpole two, as he touched the rear brake entering turn three, but he got away unscathed, with only a sharp impact on his left leg to deal with.

Both riders have been in the running for the top places in all the previous sessions this weekend, with Baz in particular finding a good pace in dry conditions after the long summer break after the Silverstone round. He also made the best of an imperfect early wet set-up after a quick change of machine set-up shortly before Superpole one began.

Mark Aitchison (Kawasaki Team Pedercini) just missed superpole qualifying by one place, while Federico Sandi (Kawasaki Team Pedercini) finished qualifying 19th on the grid.

Jeremy Guarnoni from the MRS Kawasaki Team was the top rider on a Ninja ZX-10R in the Superstock 1000 FIM Cup class in Germany and he will be second on the grid for Sunday’s race. Leandro Mercado (Kawasaki Team Pedercini) was fourth ranked in combined qualifying.

Tom Sykes: “I am on the front row and happy with that because I felt very confident with the bike in both wet and dry conditions today. I hope the sun will come out tomorrow and we will have two strong races. The main thing today was to get on the front row and we did that. I had a crash into turn three at the end but I got away lightly. I hit my thigh and ankle on the tarmac and had a ‘dead leg’ for a while but I wear the best of protective clothing and it did its job. Our bike is working the best it has for a while in full wet conditions. In any conditions I am confident and the team has done a great job.”

Loris Baz: “Now, when I would like Superpole to be dry, it is wet! I am happy with all the work we have done over the weekend because we have been near the top always. I am looking forward to the race because we have a good pace and I think race day should be dry. A few times we went out in the wet we were struggling and had a lot of problems in those conditions, so fourth on the grid is more than OK. It is really good to start close to the front in the races especially as we have been in the first few riders all through practice. We tested a lot this winter and I have more experience on the bike so now I can push hard from the beginning of the sessions. We also have had a lot of races behind us now. It is also good sometimes not to ride too much, when you have the bike working the way you need it. It means you can come back to the races feeling fresh and ride at 100%.”




More, from a press release issued by Aprilia:

THE APRILIA RACING RIDERS STRUGGLE TO FIND THE RIGHT FEELING IN A WET SUPERPOLE AT THE NÜRBURGRING.

SYLVAIN GUINTOLI WILL START FROM THE THIRD ROW AND EUGENE LAVERTY FROM THE FOURTH. IN ANY CASE, BOTH RIDERS WILL BE ABLE TO COUNT ON AN EXCELLENT RACE PACE.

Nürburgring, 31 August 2013 – The Nürburgring Superpole was a rainy one today. Therefore Race Direction opted for the two 20 minute sessions during which the riders competed with wet set-ups.

In the first part of Superpole Sylvain Guintoli rather easily managed to qualify in the top nine which moved him forward into Superpole 2. In the continuous reshuffling of positions that is typical when weather conditions are difficult and variable, Sylvain stopped the clock with the third best time which kept hopes high for the final bout. However, the second 20 minute session had the French championship leader struggling more than he should have with some problems pushing his RSV4 to the limit on the German track. His position in the championship standings and the residual pain in his shoulder convinced him not to take any pointless risks, ending Superpole with the eighth best time which means he'll be starting from the third row on the starting grid tomorrow.

In any case Sylvain is encouraged by the race pace he demonstrated in the two sessions prior to Superpole, where he confirmed that he is able to maintain a good pace in the dry.

Sylvain Guintoli: “The positive thing about today is that we worked really well on our pace. I feel like I'm ready for the races. Superpole didn't go as I had hoped. I really struggled to find my pace on in the wet and that will force me to work overtime tomorrow. It looks like the races will be held in the dry and that's good for us, but in any case we'll have to overtake a lot of riders since we're starting from behind. I hope my RSV4's power will make a comeback a bit simpler!” .

For Eugene Laverty Superpole didn't exactly go as planned either. The Northern Irish rider had to deal with a demanding set up since there wasn't enough time to completely convert the bike to wet settings. Eugene struggled from the start, unable to get into the top nine and therefore forced to retire for the day after Superpole 1. His final time puts him in twelfth place (fourth row) and is certainly not the result he had hoped for. However, like his team mate Eugene says that he is confident after seeing the good times he put in on a dry track in the two sessions leading up to Superpole.

Eugene Laverty: “It wasn't exactly an ideal Superpole. It was definitely the worst qualifier of the season and that doesn't make things easy for the races tomorrow. It's a shame because in the free practice sessions the bike was really going fast on the used tyres. I'm certain that we'll be able to be competitive in the second part of the race, but the problem will be the first few laps since we're starting from the fourth row. In Superpole the bike settings were still oriented too much to dry conditions since the sudden rain didn't give us time to change it over completely. These things happen. Even one more lap would have been enough to gain enough confidence and maybe move up a few positions on the grid”.




More, from a press release issued by BMW Motorrad Motorsport:

Nürburgring – Qualifying Practice 2 & Superpole.
Saturday, 31st August 2013.

Weather conditions: Overcast with rain in the afternoon.
Temperature: Air: 15 – 18 °C, Track: 18 – 23 °C
Number of riders participating: 20 from 13 teams
Fastest lap Qualifying Practices: Chaz Davies (BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK Team) 1:54.223 min
Fastest lap Superpole 2 Wet: Ayrton Badovini (Team Ducati Alstare) 2:09.513 min

Front row at the home round: The BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK Team put in a strong performance at the Nürburgring (GER) today. Factory rider Marco Melandri (ITA) qualified second on the grid with his BMW S 1000 RR in this afternoon’s Superpole qualifying. His team-mate Chaz Davies (GBR) was fastest in both qualifying practices and finished seventh in the Superpole. Thus, he will start the tenth round of the 2013 FIM Superbike World Championship from the third row.

Today, the riders and teams had to deal with the typical, unpredictable, “Eifel weather”. The day started overcast but dry. Chaz set a dominant fastest lap time in this morning’s second qualifying practice, more than four tenths faster than his closest rival. Marco improved from yesterday to seventh position. Just a few minutes before the start of the Superpole, it started to rain. The session was declared “wet”, meaning that there would be two twenty minute sessions. Both BMW factory riders made it to the second and deciding part. Marco was putting in one fast lap time after another and was leading the timings most of the time but dropped back to second when Ayrton Badovini (ITA) improved his time in the closing stages to take pole position. Chaz was lying in fourth but dropped back to seventh at the end. As he fell during his final attempt, he could not improve his time.

In the FIM Superstock 1000 Cup, Sylvain Barrier (FRA) from the BMW Motorrad GoldBet STK Team secured his sixth pole position of the season. In today’s deciding second qualifying practice he set a new lap record with his BMW HP4. His team-mate Greg Gildenhuys (RSA), who is racing at the Nürburgring for the first time, qualified ninth in the field of 26 riders.

Marco Melandri:
Fastest lap Qualifying Practices: 1:54.938 min (P7) / Fastest lap FP: 1:54.825 min (P5) / Fastest lap Superpole 2 Wet: 2:09.616 min (P2)
“Today was a very good qualifying session, I’m really pleased. Until the end I tried to get the pole-position. A few minutes before the end I rode a bit slower to cool the tyres down and to try a new flying lap, but it didn’t work because there was not enough water on the track. So I decided not to risk anything as second place on the front row of the grid was an excellent starting point for tomorrow’s races. It will be important to start well; I want to be within the front group from the beginning on. We have a good race pace in the dry and I’m very confident for the races.”

Chaz Davies:
Fastest lap Qualifying Practices: 1:54.223 min (P1) / Fastest lap FP: 1:55.078 min (P10) / Fastest lap Superpole 2 Wet: 2:12.663 min (P7)
“The second qualifying practice was good. I surprised myself a little bit with my lap time. I obviously knew it was fast but I did not expect a low 1:54 on race tyres and I think it was already the fourth lap on that tyre so I was quite happy with that. Then we tried a couple of things in the free practice which brought positives and negatives and we learnt a lot for tomorrow. Then the Superpole was wet which was a bit frustrating and it was a shame that I crashed on the last lap although I am not really disappointed with seventh on the grid. I will be able to see the front guys so it is just a question of making a good start.”

Serafino Foti (Sport Director BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK Team):
“It was a good day. We solved the issues Marco experienced yesterday and he was so close to getting pole-position. Marco is very happy and confident for tomorrow. He will start from the front row for the first time this year and he’ll for sure try to have two great races. Chaz struggled a little in wet conditions; otherwise he could have been on the second row. But he has a good race pace and he’s able to start very well, so we’re confident for tomorrow’s races. In the Superstock Cup, Sylvain retained yesterday’s provisional pole-position and set the new track record. But our competitors are very motivated for tomorrow, because they want to leave the championship open until the last race. Greg also improved today. Tomorrow we should see a good race.”

Andrea Dosoli (Technical Director BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK Team):
“We are quite happy with the work done on the RRs today. Chaz has shown an impressive speed on the race tyre. The lap time he did this morning was amazing and he has also further improved his race pace a little bit. But still there is some room for improvement and we will work on it tomorrow morning during the warm-up. Unfortunately during the wet Superpole he did not have a fantastic feeling with the bike, especially going into the corners. But starting from the third row is not a big issue. We have seen in the past that Chaz is a good starter and I am sure that he can catch up with the front guys and stay with them until the end. On Marco’s side we are quite happy with the front row. He now has a better feeling with the bike especially on the soft tyre. He has improved his lap time but even more important is that his race pace is good. So if he can do one of his usual good starts tomorrow I guess there is the potential to have a good race.”




More, from a press release issued by Althea Racing:

Rain riuns team Althea’s plans at the Nurburgring

Althea Racing took part in the second day of Superbike action at the Nurburgring today. Today’s weather at the German track was characterised by grey skies and much lower temperatures than yesterday. After the difficulties experienced yesterday, the team started to see the fruits of their labour in second qualifying this morning, with Giugliano managing to conclude the session in fourth position, thus qualifying for the Superpole with a best time of 1’54.769, more than a second quicker than his best time set yesterday.

In the afternoon’s free practice, team Althea and its rider worked on refining the Aprilia RSV4’s set-up in preparation for the Superpole. Unfortunately, just a few minutes before the start of what had been declared a ‘wet’ Superpole, the rain really started to come down hard. Althea Racing’s technicians worked quickly to adapt Giugliano’s bike to the new track conditions. Unfortunately however, in its new configuration, the bike didn’t permit Giugliano to best express himself on a track that was slippery due to the rain. Davide recorded a 2’18.775 which was not enough to allow him proceed on to the second phase. The Althea rider concluded in fourteenth position and will start tomorrow’s races, each 20 laps in length, from the fifth row.

Davide Giugliano : “This morning’s qualifying went quite well. We didn’t start well yesterday but then we gradually found the right direction and the results soon came. This afternoon I tried to find a good feeling with the bike and I can say that I’m pretty satisfied with what we got done in dry conditions. Unfortunately in the wet the bike was not quite right and I was unable to qualify for phase two. It’s a shame because I’m normally quick in the wet. Tomorrow I hope for a dry track so that I can make up some positions from a fifth-row start.”

Genesio Bevilacqua : “It was a bit of a difficult afternoon. Rain complicated our work to set-up our RSV4 for the altered conditions. Perhaps we didn’t react quickly enough and were unable to get the bike exactly right in the short time available. Davide suffered as a result and for this
reason he was not able to proceed to phase two of the Superpole. Tomorrow we hope that he is able to make a good start and on a dry track, so that he can make up lost ground. It will also be important for Giugliano to remain consistent throughout the races in order for us to achieve strong results.”




More, from a press release issued by Pata Honda Superbike Team:

Second row for Rea and Haslam in Germany

Jonathan Rea and Leon Haslam will line up alongside each other on the second row of the grid for tomorrow’s two tenth-round World Superbike championship races at the Nürburgring in Germany after today’s final Superpole qualifying sessions.

Superpole was declared wet as rain began to fall on the 5.137km circuit just minutes before SP1 was due to start. It consequently reverted to two 20-minute sessions with six of the 15 qualifying riders eliminated at the break.

Both Pata Honda riders made it through to Superpole 2, with Rea setting the fifth fastest time and Haslam a few tenths off in sixth place. Italian rider Ayrton Badovini will start tomorrow’s two 20-lap races from pole position.

Jonathan Rea – 5th, 2m11.204s

Superpole was frustrating in those conditions because we really needed another dry session to try a different arrangement with the front. But the weather was what it was and when the track was fully wet I had a really good feeling with the bike. As soon as it began to dry I had no entry traction. It’s been an issue with the bike’s wet setting for many years and is a combination of engine brake control at the apex and the chassis setting. I really hope tomorrow morning is dry because I don’t have enough pace. It’s consistent but I need to find a bit more time, which I think we can do. All in all, though, it’s been a pretty satisfactory Superpole.

Leon Haslam – 6th, 2m12.006s

We’ve mande some good steps in the dry over the weekend, so I’m happy with today. The rain threw a spanner in the works for Superpole and we need to work on a better wet set up but we’ve got a clear direction for that. The summer break has done my leg some good and it’s nice to be back in the top spots. We’ve been working on the first sector here and we managed to find the time with some rear settings, which made all the difference in the dry. It’s been tough in the last few races having to fight my way through, but we should be able to have a good go from row two.

Pieter Breddels – technical co-ordinator

We tried some different things for Jonathan in the dry but they didn’t really help and he missed out on a chance to get some rhythm. He should be OK if it’s dry tomorrow but I’m positive he could have improved on fifth if his settings had been a little better. In the second free practice Leon managed to find a breakthrough and was second fastest with a really good lap time. I’m happy to see him up there and I think both he and Jonathan can fight for the podium tomorrow.




More, from a press release issued by Team Suzuki News Service:

FIXI Crescent Suzuki will start tomorrow's two eni FIM Superbike World Championship races at Nurburgring in Germany on the third and fourth rows of the grid after a wet Superpole this afternoon.

Heavy rain began to fall over the 5,137m German circuit just as the battle for grid positions was about to start, leading to a wet Superpole of two 20-minute sessions being declared. The late onset of the rain meant that it was not possible to get a full wet set-up for the Yoshimura-powered Suzuki GSX-R1000s, so Jules Cluzel and Leon Camier had to battle against the elements and adapt to their machines in the now torrential rain. Both riders pushed towards the top of the leader-board in the early stages, but neither could find enough grip to hold those positions. Cluzel recorded his best lap at the end of the session to secure eighth place and progress through to Superpole 2, but Camier couldn't fully come to terms with conditions and was eliminated with the 11th quickest time, which leaves him in the middle of the fourth row for tomorrow's races.

Cluzel made a solid start to Superpole 2, but as he started to push for a better time he crashed heavily in turn-one, as the wet track caused him to high-side his FIXI Crescent Suzuki GSX-R. He was able to walk away from the incident and even tried to re-mount his bike, but the damage was too severe to his machine and his Superpole was brought to an abrupt end. Cluzel will start from ninth on the grid and will be looking to continue with his learning-curve on a Superbike around the Nurburgring in tomorrow's races.

Camier will be aiming to make a good start and capitalise on the strong and consistent form he had shown in the dry earlier today. He followed on from yesterday's impressive performance and again produced strong laps on both new and used tyres of varying compounds. Camier was disappointed with the Superpole outcome, but remains in a confident and determined mood for the rest of the weekend.

Today's Superpole was won by Ayrton Badovini on a Ducati and he will head the front row for tomorrow's two 20-lap events, the first of which will get underway at 12.00hrs local time (11.00hrs BST), with the second beginning at 15.30hrs local time (14.30hrs BST).

Jules Cluzel:

"It has been a strange day for me because I was expecting to improve from yesterday. We tried some stuff this morning, but it was no better so we made some changes for free practice and this was a bit of an improvement. In Superpole I was looking to make some steps and try the softer tyre and see how this would work, but we had a lot of rain, so I couldn't try it. I had been fast in the rain in Moscow and I was looking for a good qualifying and I thought this was possible, but it was so slippery and very easy to fall down and I did just that! Ninth on the grid is ok, it's a good position to be in to get away with the front group and improve on the feeling I have had this weekend."

Leon Camier:

"I just didn't feel comfortable in the wet, but we didn't really go with a wet set-up because we didn't have enough time to change it completely. Everything felt really hard and it was like I wasn't getting enough grip and I couldn't turn in too, so I wasn't really able to get into a rhythm and put in a fast time. We did some good times on the hard slicks earlier in the day and our pace seems ok, but the two Kawasakis seem to have some advantage with the rest of us all about the same, so it looks like it will be a hard couple of races. My pace on used tyres is not too bad, but it is looking like it might be cold tomorrow so that will affect tyre decisions. I am in some good company around me on the grid, so we'll be trying to get through in the beginning, which is hard to do when there is plenty of grip, so we'll just have to see what happens."

Paul Denning - Team Manager:

"It was a disappointing qualifying result this afternoon, especially for Leon after the very promising work yesterday and today. It was a strange situation with the rain coming suddenly, just as Superpole was starting, and no teams had the time to make big adjustments to the bikes for the wet. The first 20-minutes were difficult for all the riders and unfortunately Leon didn't have the confidence in the very slippery conditions. He was not able to push hard enough and missed the cut for Superpole 2. Jules did well to make the second session and rode a good steady first lap, but unfortunately got caught out as he pushed harder on his second lap. He wasn't alone in crashing and clearly there is not a lot of grip here in the wet at Nurburgring. Jules is rather sore, but looks fine to race tomorrow and we're positive about turning a disappointing qualifying into much improved results on Sunday."
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