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Apr 13, 2014

eni FIM Superbike World Championship Race Two Results From Motorland Aragon

A map of Motorland Aragon.

eni FIM Superbike World Championship

Motorland Aragon, Spain

April 13, 2014

Race Two Results (all on Pirelli tires):

1. Tom SYKES, UK (Kawasaki ZX-10R), 17 laps, 33:37.223

2. Loris BAZ, France (Kawasaki ZX-10R), -0.338 second

3. Marco MELANDRI, Italy (Aprilia RSV4 Factory), -0.470

4. Sylvain GUINTOLI, France (Aprilia RSV4 Factory), -5.429

5. Jonathan REA, UK (Honda CBR1000RR), -8.861 seconds

6. Eugene LAVERTY, Ireland (Suzuki GSX-R1000), -15.986

7. Davide GIUGLIANO, Italy (Ducati 1199 Panigale R), -18.206

8. Leon HASLAM, UK (Honda CBR1000RR), -25.513

9. Toni ELIAS, Spain (Aprilia RSV4 Factory), -25.823

10. David SALOM, Spain (Kawasaki ZX-10R), -38.949, EVO

11. Niccolo CANEPA, Italy (Ducati 1199 Panigale R), -39.413, EVO

12. Leon CAMIER, UK (BMW S1000RR), -41.486, EVO, ran off track

13. Sheridan MORAIS, South Africa (Kawasaki ZX-10R), -62.587, EVO

14. Luca SCASSA, Italy (Kawasaki ZX-10R), -69.720, EVO

15. Fabien FORET, France (Kawasaki ZX-10R), -74.046, EVO

16. Alessandro ANDREOZZI, Italy (Kawasaki ZX-10R), -74.233, EVO

17. Imre TOTH, Hungary (BMW S1000RR), -97.781

18. Peter SEBESTYEN, Hungary (BMW S1000RR), -114.547, EVO

19. Aaron YATES, USA (EBR 1190 RX), -115.195

20. Geoff MAY, USA (EBR 1190 RX), -117.166

21. Michel FABRIZIO, Italy (Kawasaki ZX-10R), -5 laps, DNF, retired, EVO

22. Jeremy GUARNONI, France (Kawasaki ZX-10R), -8 laps, DNF, crash, EVO

23. Claudio CORTI, Italy (MV Agusta F4 RR), -12 laps, DNF, crash

24. Chaz DAVIES, UK (Ducati 1199 Panigale R), -14 laps, DNF, crash

25. Alex LOWES, UK (Suzuki GSX-R1000), -16 laps, DNF, crash

Subject to Homologation:

26. Ayrton BADOVINI, Italy (Bimota BB3), -40.915 seconds, EVO

27. Christian IDDON, UK (Bimota BB3), -7 laps, DNF, mechanical, EVO

World Championship Point Standings (after 4 of 26 races):

1. Sykes, 75 points

2. Baz, 71

3. Guintoli, 64

4. Melandri, 49

5. Rea, 48

6. Laverty, 46

7. Giugliano, 43

8. Davies, 30

9. Haslam, 25

10. Elias, 23

11. Salom, 22

12. Canepa, 16

13. TIE, Lowes/Foret, 9

15. Camier, 8

16. Morais, 7

17. Glenn Allerton, 6

18. Guarnoni, 4

19. Corti, 3

20. Scassa, 2

EVO Championship Point Standings (after 4 of 26 races):

1. Salom, 22

2. Canepa, 16

3. Foret, 9

4. Camier, 8

5. Morais, 7

6. Glenn Allerton, 6

7. Guarnoni, 4

8. Scassa, 2

More, from a press release issued by Dorna WSBK Press Office:

Sykes leaves Spain with Championship lead

Alcaniz (Spain), Sunday 13 April 2014 -
The second race of the day at MotorLand Aragon was a carbon copy of race 1, with Kawasaki Racing Team riders Tom Sykes and Loris Baz dominating in the Spanish sun.

Baz who had been unable to stick with his team mate in the opening race looked a lot more comfortable this afternoon as did Marco Melandri (Aprilia Racing Team) who was incredibly fast at the end of the race, closing down the two green machines rapidly to put himself in the hunt for the victory.

In a spectacular final three laps the three riders exchanged places a number of times with the deciding move coming at the final hairpin at the Aprilia of Melandri went wide allowing Sykes and Baz to claim a 1-2 finish for the second time today. Melandri finished 3rd.

Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia Racing Team) was 4th, with race one podium finisher Jonathan Rea (Pata Honda World Superbike Team) and Eugene Laverty (Voltcom Crescent Suzuki) completing the top 6.

Race 1 EVO best classified Leon Camier (BMW Motorrad Italia) was involved in a race long dual with Althea Racing Ducati’s Niccolo Canepa and local rider David Salom (Kawasaki Racing Team). In the end Salom took the EVO honours after a last lap mistake from the BMW rider dropped him to 12th overall, handing the category victory to the local rider ahead of Canepa.

Alex Lowes (Voltcom Crescent Suzuki), Chaz Davies (Ducati Superbike Team), Claudio Corti (MV Agusta RC – Yakhnich Motorsport) and Jeremy Guarnoni (MRS Kawasaki) all fell without injury.

More, from a press release issued by Aprilia:





Alcaniz (Spain), 13 April 2014 – Race Sunday did not get off to the best of starts for Aprilia Racing in the second World SBK round on the Spanish Aragon track.

In the first race, hindered by a sudden drop in tyre performance, Marco Melandri and Sylvain Guintoli progressively lost contact with the leading pack and were forced to run a brave, albeit defensive race. After a good start the Aprilia standard bearers gradually lost positions and although Guintoli managed to finish in 6th place, Melandri dropped down to 11th.

The change in race times (10:30 AM for the first race), introduced for the first time during this championship round, had a profound impact on the performance of the tyres mounted on the RSV4 (the reigning Manufacturer World champion bike).

But the rider from Ravenna demonstrated the stuff of a champion and with support from the entire team he proved his character. In Race 2, with more normal temperature conditions, Melandri and his Aprilia came back into the best pace. Starting from the seventh spot on the grid, Marco began a series of battles with the riders ahead of him, leaving Guintoli, Davies, Giugliano and Rea in his exhaust, taking position after position until, four laps from the end, catching up Sykes and Baz, the pair of which had led the entire race, keeping all their adversaries at bay. With a spectacular move Melandri overtook for second place with just over 2 laps to go. But for a rider of Melandri's calibre, and after such a spectacular comeback, setting his sights on the win is a must. Marco mounted his attack in the last lap. Trying to stay glued to Sykes' wheel and at the end of the last straight stretch he carried out a braking move as spectacular as it was impossible but he went too wide and wound up in third place, finishing the race in that order.

He rode a brilliant race, truly the performance of a key player in a world championship which has only just begun and promises to be exceptionally uncertain. The test of character that Melandri and his RSV4 demonstrated on the track christens this all-Italian duo as definite hopefuls for the title.

Guintoli takes home 21 points from the first European round, reconfirming his extreme consistency and the fact that anyone who wants one of the top spots in the championship standings will have to reckon with the strong French rider.

Marco Melandri: “It's a shame that we basically wasted Race 1. From the very first laps I was struggling and wasn't able to keep my pace. In the second race we made some changes with the team and the bike was working much better. I only lost a bit of time in the first part of the race. I had a little trouble braking going into turns but lap by lap I gained confidence until catching up the front runners. I overtook Baz and at that point, with the win within a shout, my DNA pushed me to make a go of it even if maybe I was a little too far behind Sykes. Unfortunately I went wide and finished third, but I had to prove that I could win and I will take that confidence with me to Assen to get my first win of the season.”

Sylvain Guintoli: “Race 2 definitely went a lot better. Besides the result I was able to ride more confidently whereas in Race 1 we were just trying to take home as many points as we could manage. In Race 2 when Marco overtook me I tried to follow him and catch up the front runners but I lost the front end twice, so I decided just to maintain my pace. The improvements between the two races were clear. At one point my times were in line with the leaders but I was too far back by then to be able to catch them up. We need to figure out how the low temperatures in the first race had such an impact on our performance. With the new race times making the RSV4 perform as best as possible even with low temperatures will be important.”

More, from a press release issued by Althea Racing:

A great result for Canepa in SBK race two at Motorland Aragon

The second round of the Superbike world championship took place today at the Motorland Aragon circuit in Spain. After a solid performance in practice, Niccolò Canepa lined up on the fifth row, in thirteenth position, for today’s two 17-lap races, which ran in warm and sunny conditions. According to the new Superbike schedule, the races took place at 10.30am and 1.10pm.

Unfortunately race one lasted only five laps for Canepa, who was forced to retire due to a technical problem. Niccolò had made a strong start and was lapping in around tenth place, when he had to stop due to a technical issue that his technicians are still investigating. In race two Canepa made a great start and he was soon fighting against the leading Evo riders, Salom and Camier. Despite the fact that the Aragon track is not the easiest for the 1199 Panigale, the Italian rider fought right to the end to be the first Evo finisher, closing the race in eleventh position, second among the riders in his category. In the championship standings, Canepa is lying second, six points behind leader Salom. The next round of the Superbike World championship will take place in Assen in The Netherlands over the weekend of 25-27 April.

Niccolò Canepa: “This is clearly one of the most difficult tracks for us. We have worked well over the weekend and the start of race one went perfectly. I was lapping very fast and would have been able to finish first among the Evo riders when unfortunately I had to stop due to a technical problem. In race two I was consistently fast and this is important, because we were lacking that consistency in Australia. The afternoon head penalized us a little but I was still able to battle with the leading Evo guys and finished second. For now this is ok, also because we now head to tracks that better suit our bike, in which I plan to push hard for the win in my category.”

Genesio Bevilacqua: “In race one, we were unlucky but in the second Canepa put in a great performance and I’m really pleased about that. On a difficult track for us we nevertheless fought with the fastest Evo riders. Let’s not forget that this is only our second round, which was useful in terms of collecting data that were unable to collate in Australia, where we rode for the first time. Here at Aragon we were looking for consistency that we can say we’ve achieved that – an important factor in the next races, in which we will aim for the win which is definitely within our reach.”

More, from a press release issued by Team HERO EBR:

Top Twenty Finishes For Team Hero EBR In Spain

Team Hero EBR secured another solid set of results in today’s World Superbike races at MotorLand Aragon.

Race 1 saw both riders make excellent starts, ending the opening lap several places higher than they had qualified. Comfortably ahead of the BMW machines, the EBR 1190RX machine of Aaron ran inside the top 20 eventually finishing in 17th position. Geoff on the other hand was forced to retire from 22nd position on lap 5 with a technical problem which thankfully was able to be resolved for race 2.

The opening race result is especially satisfying given the fact that Aaron had never ridden at Aragon before, and we expected the character of the circuit to make it a difficult weekend. To start 25th and finish 17th is credit to the whole team.

In race two both riders made slight adjustments to their EBR 1190RX machines in an event to close the gap to the point scoring finishers.

In slightly warmer conditions both riders finished, with Aaron once again ahead of both BMW machines. Geoff completed his first race of the season in 20th.

Geoff May: “I am sorry I was out of the game in Race 1 because I need to test as much as possible. Anyway, I am happy because I healed properly after the Phillip Island crash and I really look forward to the next race in Assen, to make a another step forward with the development of the bike.”

Aaron Yates: “I feel satisfied. I completed both the races, collecting a lot of data for the team and we also tried a couple of adjustments to the bike that will help us to be faster starting from the next race.”

Giulio Bardi – Team Manager: “We can be satisfied for this race because Aragon is a fast track and we were obviously going to suffer with the long straight. Aaron and Geoff did a great job along with our mechanics and we collected a lot of important data to better develop our EBR 1190RX. Every session on track we got an improvement and I feel confident we will do even better at the next race, in Assen.”

More, from a press release issued by Ducati Corse:

A bittersweet day for the Ducati Superbike Team at Motorland Aragon

Alcaniz (Spain), Sunday 13 April 2014A rather bittersweet day for the Ducati Superbike Team that just missed out on a podium finish in race 1 at Motorland Aragon in Spain today. In this second round of the 2014 Superbike World championship, rider Chaz Davies finished fourth in today’s first Superbike race while his teammate Davide Giugliano closed the day’s races in seventh and eighth position.

Race 1 – In accordance with the new race day schedule, the first action-packed SBK race of the day kicked off at the earlier time of 10.30am in dry conditions but on a cool track (16°C). Starting from fourth on the grid, Giugliano made a fast start and was into third by the end of the opening lap, right behind the two Kawasakis of Sykes and Baz. Davide got past Baz on lap 3 but then continued to battle with the Frenchman over the subsequent laps. He held third position for the best part of the race right until the final lap when he was caught, and ultimately passed by Rea along the long straight. In his attempt to regain third position through the final corners, there was contact between Giugliano and the British rider and unfortunately it was the Italian who came off worse, crashing in the process. By immediately climbing back on his 1199 Panigale, the Ducati Superbike rider was able to cross the line, in final eighth position. Davies, sixth on the grid, was lying seventh through the opening stages. Giving chase to the two Aprilias (Melandri and Guintoli), he managed to pass both at the mid-race point. Up into fifth by lap thirteen, Chaz concluded the race in final fourth position.

Race 2 – considering the hotter track conditions, both Ducati riders, along with most of the other Superbike riders, changed tyre for the second race. Giugliano once again made a strong start and was in fourth place at the end of lap one. Davies, seventh through the first corners, overtook the two Aprilias to position himself fifth just behind his teammate. On lap two Chaz recorded the fastest lap of the race, earning his second Pirelli ‘best lap’ award of the season (1’57.982). Unfortunately only a couple of laps later he was the victim of a crash and was unable to continue the race. Giugliano was lying sixth by the mid-race point, with several seconds separating him from the riders immediately ahead of him. In the final phase of the race a drop in grip limited his ability to exit the corners and the Italian rider this closed in seventh position.

After the first two of fourteen scheduled rounds, Giugliano is in seventh position in the general standings, with 43 points, while Davies is eighth with 30 points. Ducati lies fifth in the manufacturer’s classification with 48 points.

Quotes after the races:

Chaz Davies (Ducati Superbike Team #7) – 4th, DNF

“Race 1 didn’t go as I’d hoped, despite my final position. I made a bad start and then was stuck behind the two Aprilias for a long while. I finally managed to get past them and got into something of a rhythm but then a drop in the tyre performance meant I couldn’t do more. We made some changes for the second race but the front of the bike seemed a little nervous right from the start. I was trying to save the tyre for the later stages of the race but then I lost grip at the front and crashed. For some reason the marshals wouldn’t let me continue even though my bike was still running. It’s been a disappointing day because I think Davide and I were capable of reaching the podium today. We’ve taken some important data anyway and now we move on to tracks that should be more favourable for the Ducati.”

Davide Giugliano (Ducati Superbike Team #34) – 8th, 7th

“It’s been a tricky weekend for us. This morning we had a good chance to do well, we couldn’t have beaten the Kawasakis as they have been really strong here but the podium was definitely within our reach. Unfortunately the contact with Rea put me out of the running for the podium but we came extremely close. In race 2 I really struggled; conditions were hotter and the different rear tyre didn’t make things easier for us. But we knew this was one of the hardest tracks for us and so we have to be fairly satisfied – if the bike has improved so much that we can be that close to the front here then we should be happy. My team has worked really well, the bike is riding well and so I thank my whole team and everyone in Ducati for their hard work."

Ernesto Marinelli – Ducati Superbike Project Director

“Of course we are a little disappointed because we only just missed out on the podium. We knew this would be a difficult track for us but compared to last year we have almost halved the gap along the straight and we are also satisfied to come away with important points. Davide aand Chaz have shown that they can fight for the positions that count and so we will make good use of the data collated here and immediately turn our attention to the next races.”

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

Rea climbs to Aragon podium

Pata Honda rider Jonathan Rea visited the Motorland Aragon podium for the first time after finishing third in today’s opening second-round race of the 2014 World Superbike championship in Spain.

It was the 34th World Superbike podium of the 27-year-old British rider’s career after he battled throughout the 17-lap opener to finish behind the Kawasaki machines of Tom Sykes and Loris Baz.

Rea was unable to repeat his podium performance in race two, crossing the line in fifth place after a softer front tyre option left him with a loss of feeling from the front end of his Pata Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade.

His compatriot and team-mate, Leon Haslam, took two top ten placings today, finishing race one in ninth place and coming home eighth in the second 17-lapper, which was also won by Tom Sykes.

Both Pata Honda riders have moved up in the points standings ahead of the team’s home race at Assen in two weeks’ time. Rea holds fifth position with Haslam moving into the top ten in ninth.

Honda's CBR1000RR Fireblade SP enjoyed a double podium celebration at Aragon today when Agro-On WIL Racedays Honda rider Kyle Smith finished third in the opening round of the FIM Superstock 1000 Cup championship.

Jonathan Rea - 3rd 5th

It’s been a really positive weekend for us to go back on the podium this early in the season. It hasn’t really been a trend for us recently so it’s given everyone a bit of a boost. We just really need to build on this. I really enjoy riding the bike at this circuit and we’ve made a lot of improvements since Phillip Island. In race one I ran into some rear tyre problems in the latter stages of the race, but in race two we went with the softer option, which most of the grid changed to. It was working OK but unfortunately we also used the softer front for the higher temperature. I had a few engine brake problems which pushed me into the slower corners and, with the lack of feeling from the front, I felt a bit like a passenger. I had a warning or two around mid-race, so I was kind of nursing it a bit. But we deserved two solid top fives today and I feel we can now take some momentum to Assen where we know the bike is good and build on this at a circuit I really enjoy.

Leon Haslam - 9th 8th

We definitely started here on the back foot and lost a lot of the first session on Friday. From that point we worked really well and I was feeling confident. Just before Superpole yesterday I posted the fourth fastest time and knocked time off in every session, but then I had the crash in Superpole, which wasn’t so good. I struggle in both races though – battling with throttle opening and engine braking. We had a couple of good top ten finishes but, in FP4 yesterday, I really felt I could be challenging for top five today. I’m glad this one is out of the way and we can start to focus on Assen. We’ve made big leaps with the bike in recent testing and, in my opinion, the results don’t show that and we struggled. But Jonathan had a fantastic first race and he was up there in race two. We’ re coming across a few more problems at the moment but we know we’ll get on top of it.

Pieter Breddels - technical co-ordinator

It was a great result for Jonathan in race one, overtaking Giugliano on the last lap to get on the podium. That’s what we’ve been working for all winter so well done to him and the team for that. The track conditions changed for race two and we had some front tyre and other issues, which meant him dropping back to fifth. But overall, it’s been a good weekend for him and we look forward to taking this on to Assen. Leon had a mixed weekend, starting off with some problems but looking good yesterday before his crash. Warm-up didn’t go smoothly for him either. We’re not completely satisfied with ninth and eighth and we still have some things to sort out to get a setting that will get him nearer the front, which we know is where he can be.

More, from a press release issued by Voltcom Crescent Suzuki:

Laverty fights back at Aragon

Voltcom Crescent Suzuki's Eugene Laverty laid last year's demons to rest at the Motorland Aragon circuit in Spain today with an impressive comeback ride to fifth in race one.

Laverty initially suffered a poor start to the morning race, dropping to 12th at the end of the first lap. Running wide in the early stages to relegate himself further, the Irishman dug deep on his Yoshimura-powered GSX-R to regain his pace, closing the gap to the front group to hold eighth by lap 11. The latter third of the race saw Laverty reignite the charge further, swapping positions with both Aprilias to take fifth on the final revolution. Race two initially saw more potential, before a clash with another rider resulted in a drop to 11th. Regrouping again, the Voltcom Crescent Suzuki racer took just four laps to improve on his qualifying position, holding seventh for the majority of the race before setting his fastest time of the race on lap 15 to cross the line in a well-deserved sixth.

Alex Lowes continued his progression on the world stage with a debut top ten at the Spanish circuit. A steady start allowed Lowes to circulate in eighth for the opening half of the race, before being taken by a battling group, demoting him to 11th. The British rider held his own for the closing stages, taking the dwindling Aprilia of Marco Melandri on the penultimate lap to finish 10th. A high-side at turn 13 on the second lap of the afternoon’s race denied the rookie a chance to progress his world championship education aboard the Suzuki GSX-R1000, but Lowes remains confident that he will come back fighting as the next round restores him to more familiar soil.

The new-look 2014 eni FIM Superbike World Championship’s early schedule saw the races held in bright and pleasant conditions at the Alcaniz circuit, with the afternoon race reaching a high of just 19°C. Reigning champion Tom Sykes continued his dominant form adding both race wins to his Superpole achievement the previous day.

Voltcom Crescent Suzuki’s championship contention continues in a fortnight’s time when track action returns to the iconic ‘Cathedral’ of Assen in Holland on 27th April.

Eugene Laverty:

“We salvaged two decent results today. Worst-case scenario we need to be top six in any race this year, it was a difficult weekend and we achieved that! In the first race we had the potential to fight for third, but unfortunately I ran off the track twice because we are having problems with a full tank of fuel and the engine braking control at the beginning. I had the same problem in the second race but I just had to be more careful. At the end of race one, we were really strong; race two I had a good pace but on lap one Toni Elias hit me and I moved from eighth back to twelfth position. That hurt my race a lot so I had to fight back to finish sixth, but I can at least have a smile at that.”

Alex Lowes:

“I have struggled with the bike and the track all weekend. The first eight laps of the morning race I felt pretty good but then the tyre dropped off quite a lot so I just made sure I finished. We made some improvements to the bike in the break and I actually felt better in the first lap of the second race, until the crash, and the rest is history. I scored three points in my first race, I scored five here so at least I’m getting better! We go to a track that I know next, which is really good for me. Obviously it’s going to be easier for me to improve when I know the track and hopefully it will be easier to get the bike set up as well, so I’m looking forward to it.”

Paul Denning – Team Manager:

“Two difficult races today for the team, but a fifth and a sixth for Eugene were not such bad results in terms of points, and it could have been a lot worse based on the early race positions. Eugene did very well to claw his way back into contention, and what he scored today will hopefully be very important to us as the season progresses. Alex’s learning curve at world championship level continues - the Aragon track is particularly tricky and to come here with no testing and go head-to-head with the best Superbike riders in the world was never going to be easy. He made good progress across the course of the weekend and it was a shame that the crash in the second race didn’t let him continue that learning curve. We move on to Assen, Imola and Donington for the next three races, and as a team we are confident that those circuits will suit the Suzuki better and that we will be able to challenge for the podiums.”

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