Feb 24, 2013
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by David Swarts
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World Supersport race winner Kenan Sofuoglu (center), runner-up Sam Lowes (left) and third-place finisher Michael vd Mark (right).
FIM Supersport World Championship
Phillip Island, Australia
February 24, 2013
Race Results (all on Pirelli tires):
1. Kenan SOFUOGLU, Turkey (Kawasaki ZX-6R), 15 laps, 23:32.480
2. Sam LOWES, UK (Yamaha YZF-R6), -1.899 seconds
3. Michael VD MARK, Netherlands (Honda CBR600RR), -6.771
4. Fabien FORET, France (Kawasaki ZX-6R), -11.095
5. David SALOM, Spain (Kawasaki ZX-6R), -12.076
6. Luca SCASSA, Italy (Kawasaki ZX-6R), -12.943
7. Andrea ANTONELLI, Italy (Kawasaki ZX-6R), -23.968
8. Lorenzo ZANETTI, Italy (Honda CBR600RR), -24.536
9. Massimo ROCCOLI, Italy (Yamaha YZF-R6), -24.782
10. Jack KENNEDY, Ireland (Honda CBR600RR), -24.809
More, from a press release issued by PTR Honda:
Luca shows PTR potential in Australia
PTR HONDA'S Luca Marconi went from 27th on the grid to 12th in the race at the opening round of the World Supersport Championship at Phillip Island in Australia.
The Italian has been enjoying his first weekend with PTR and showed real speed as he comfortably eclipsed his qualifying lap time as he came through the pack in the short 15-lap race.
David Linortner crashed out while fighting for 17th on the third lap. His pace in warm up suggested a top 10 finish was possible but he is unhurt and will return to action at the next round more determined than ever.
Nacho Perez started 31st on the grid and fought through to a respectable 19th, just ahead of his teammate Matt Davies in 20th. Both racers showed maturity to finish their first WSS race and will only improve from here.
Sheridan Morais suffered another technical failure right at the start of the race with his rear wheel speed sensor. His team fixed it and he returned to track to get test laps under his belt after a forgettable weekend, eventually finishing 24th.
The second round of the Championship is at Aragon in Spain on Sunday April 7th.
Luca: "I started really bad in the race and I had to recover lap by lap - I am happy with 12th place as a result. Next time I need to improve my qualifying, because it was not good. The PTR bike is today perfect. Also the tyre is good. I need more testing for starting the race. I started without launch control by myself and lost time. If I can improve qualifying and my start then this will be good."
Simon Buckmaster, PTR Honda Team Manager: "Luca had a strong ride after a bad qualifying and he needs to work on that. Credit to him though, he rode a good race from 27th on the grid, well done.
"Matt to finish in 20th is good. At just 17 years old this was a big first event in WSS and he has done well. The same is true for Nacho; they both have learnt a lot and will go forward from here.
"David has a lot of speed but he made a mistake and crashed, luckily unhurt. He has lots of potential if he stops crashing so we will be working to help him with that.
"Sheridan has had the worst possible start with the testing problems and now a speed sensor failure in the race. It has been an unlucky event but I am sure he will be running at the front where he and PTR expect to be at Aragon. It's been a hard start and things will only get better."
1. Kenan Sofuoglu TUR Mahi India Kawasaki ZX-6R 23m 32.480s
2. Sam Lowes GBR Yakhnich Yamaha YZF-R6 +1.899s
3. Michael van der Mark NED Pata Honda CBR600RR +6.771s
4. Fabien Foret FRA Mahi India Kawasaki ZX-6R +11.095s
5. David Salom ESP Intermoto PonyExpres Kawasaki ZX-6R +12.076s
6. Luca Scassa ITA Intermoto PonyExpres Kawasaki ZX-6R +12.943s
7. Andrea Antonelli ITA Go Eleven Kawasaki ZX-6R +23.968s
8. Lorenzo Zanetti ITA Pata Honda CBR600RR +24.536s
9. Massimo Roccoli ITA Pata by Martini Yamaha YZF-R6 +24.782s
10. Jack Kennedy IRL RivaMoto Honda CBR600RR +24.809s
12. Luca Marconi ITA PTR Honda CBR600RR +33.028s
19. Nacho Calero Perez ESP PTR Honda CBR600RR +48.398s
20. Matt Davies AUS PTR Honda CBR600RR +51.343s
24. Sherian Morais RSA PTR Honda CBR600RR +4laps
Championship Positions after one of 13 rounds
1: Sofuoglu 25
2: Lowes 20
3: VD Mark 16
4: Foret 13
5: Salom 11
6: Scassa 10
12: LUCA MARCONI, PTR HONDA 4.
More, from a press release issued by Kawasaki:
Sofuoglu Makes A Winning Start With Kawasaki Mahi Racing Team India
WSS, Phillip Island, Australia, 24 February 2013
Kenan Sofuoglu won a reduced distance 15-lap Supersport World Championship race in Australia and in doing so set a new lap record and extended his total of WSS race wins to a new all-time best of 22.
Kenan swapped the lead often and fought almost all race long with the British rider Sam Lowes, whom he finally beat by 1.899 seconds after a brilliant late display of pure pace, breaking the lap record over and over near the end. His new lap record of 1'33.283 was set on the very last lap.
The fight for fourth place finally went to Kawasaki Mahi Racing Team India rider Fabien Foret, despite a dreadful start that saw him fight back from 14th place in race one. He was battered and bruised from a big practice fall but gritted his teeth to leave Australia fourth in the standings.
A great day in many ways for the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R saw both Kawasaki Intermoto Ponyexpres riders, David Salom and Luca Scassa, finish fifth and sixth respectively, despite each having their own hand injuries to contend with. Team Go Eleven Kawasaki rider Alessandro Antonelli was seventh, putting five Kawasaki machines in the top seven places.
Vladimir Ivanov (Kawasaki DMC-Lorenzini Team) posted 11th place and Kevin Coghlan (Kawasaki DMC-Lorenzini Team) was 18th, just out of the points.
Kenan Sofuoglu: â€œIt all worked out very well in the end. Sam Lowes did a good job all weekend and it was not easy to catch him, but we kept working to find the way to save the tyre for 15 laps and in the morning warm-up I did not give up. This morning I told mechanics we should do it in the warm-up and show everyone we could do it in the race. Warm-up was good and also the race - the last three or four laps especially. The plan was to give it everything and the lap times was almost at qualification pace for those last three laps. I was happy because the team were working very well and the bike also. The Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R is still the best bike in Supersport. Everybody thought after the qualifying that another bike would come and beat everyone else but Kawasaki power is still there and it is a great package for the full race.â€
Fabien Foret: â€œAt the beginning I got left on the line because I did not put it in first gear, not properly anyway. I came back well and I just rode as hard as I could and tried to enjoy it. I am hurting a lot but on the bike it is not too bad. I had a big crash in practice and I am just stiff and sore but that is not the big issue when on the bike.â€
David Salom: â€œI had a very big accident in practice so I was surprise to be able to race and then I surprised that I could finish inside the top five. For me it was a good race and a good weekend with the bike, if we forget the fact that I was riding with an injured little finger on my right hand. We made a recovery and we should have a strong result and at the next round at Motorland.â€
More, from a press release issued by World Superbike Press Office:
World Supersport - Kenan Sofouglu forces his way to victory
Kenan Sofuoglu wins the 32nd race of his career in World Supersport Race at Phillip Island by getting the nod over pole man Sam Lowes (Yakhnich Motorsport Yamaha), after a thrilling battle that went on throughout the entire race. The defending and three-time World Supersport Champion gave Mahi Racing Team India Kawasaki the first win in the series and set the new lap record in 1'33.283. Lowes, on the other hand, did his best to stay close to the Turkish rider to eventually finish with a solid second place.
Rookie Michael van der Mark (Pata Honda World Supersport Team) ended up 3rd in his debut race in World Supersport. The Reigning European Superstock 600 Champion managed to stay with the two riders up front during the first part of the race, slowing down a bit later on and finishing with 6.771 seconds from Sofuoglu.
Second Mahi Racing Team India rider Fabien Foret finished 4th ahead of Intermoto Ponyexpres duo of David Salom and Luca Scassa, with Andrea Antonelli (Team Goeleven Kawasaki) to follow. The 2002 World Supersport Champion got a terrible start from the 3rd spot on the grid, crossing the line at the end of lap 1 in 14th position. An unlucky Roberto Rolfo (ParkinGO MV Agusta Corse) was forced to withdraw from the race in the very last part, while battling for 4th position. A big crash on the exit of Turn 12 at the end of lap 3 involved Russian Vladimir Leonov (Yakhnich Motorsport Yamaha) and Raffaele De Rosa (Team Lorini Honda).
Results: 1. Sofuoglu (Kawasaki) 15 Laps/66.675 km in 23'32.480 average 169.935 kph; 2. Lowes (Yamaha) 1.899; 3. Vd Mark (Honda) 6.771; 4. Foret (Kawasaki) 11.095; 5. Salom (Kawasaki) 12.076; 6. Scassa (Kawasaki) 12.943; 7. Antonelli (Kawasaki) 23.968; 8. Zanetti (Honda) 24.536; 9. Roccoli (Yamaha) 24.782; 10. Kennedy (Honda) 24.809; 11. Ivanov (Kawasaki) 32.825; 12. Marconi (Honda) 33.028; 13. Tamburini (Suzuki) 33.055; 14. Scholtz (Suzuki) 34.067; 15. Baldolini (Honda) 34.993; etc.
Riders Championship: 1. Sofuoglu 25; 2. Lowes 20; 3. Vd Mark 16; 4. Foret 13; 5. Salom 11; 6. Scassa 10; 7. Antonelli 9; 8. Zanetti 8; 9. Roccoli 7; 10. Kennedy 6; 11. Ivanov 5; 12. Marconi 4; 13. Tamburini 3; 14. Scholtz 2; 15. Baldolini 1. Manufacturers Championship: 1. Kawasaki 25; 2. Yamaha 20; 3. Honda 16; 4. Suzuki 3.
More, from a press release issued by Pata Honda:
Debut podium for van der Mark
Michael van der Mark took a podium finish in his World Supersport debut today, finishing third behind race winner Kenan Sofuoglu and Sam Lowes in todayâ€™s 2013 championship opener at Phillip Island in Australia.
The 20-year-old Dutch rider, who won the European Superstock 600 series last season, guided his Pata Honda CBR600RR for 15 laps around the abrasive 4.445km Phillip Island circuit, nursing his rear tyre and always staying in touch with his much more experience rivals.
Van der Markâ€™s Pata Honda team-mate, Lorenzo Zanetti, enjoyed a solid World Sueprsport debut, finishing his first race in eighth place and consolidating the steps forward he has made with his machine during testing and practice sessions at Phillip Island.
Michael van der Mark â€“ 3rd
I had a good start, I think â€“ I practiced some start during qualifying, but I never had a start like that! I followed the pace of Kenan (Sofuoglu) and Same (Lowes) and saw that I could stay with them quite easily. I also stayed positive with the throttle â€“ opening really slow to take care of the tyre. At the end I saw that the guy in fourth place was not catching me, so I slowed down a little bit. For me, third place is like a win in my first race, so Iâ€™m really happy. Also thanks to my team because we found a set-up to save the tyre today. We changed a lot with the electronics and my riding style and at the end of the race the tyre was still working. Itâ€™s a fantastic feeling!
Lorenzo Zanetti â€“ 8th
Eighth is not so bad for my first race in World Supersport. I feel good because Iâ€™ve learned the working methods of the team, which is new for me and not so easy. I have also had to learn the bike. To fight for the podium is another step, of course, especially in the last part of the race when the tyre goes down. Of course, now we have some data to check and we can work at another test before the Aragon race. Iâ€™d like to thank the whole team for the work this whole weekend and, of course, compliments to Mikey (van der Mark) for a good job.
Pieter Breddels â€“ technical co-ordinator
Michael gave us our first podium of the season and what can you say? It was his first Supersport race with a podium finish and he was even able to close the gap to the front runners and battle with them on equal terms. Heâ€™s been amazing since we got here and he has done really, really well. For Lorenzo, in the end, he had quite a battle in the race, unfortunately not for the very front positions. He has improved so much since the test, even though there is still some work to do. Heâ€™s a good rider â€“ he knows it and we know it, so we just have to bring it all together. But all-in-all, it was a good day for the Supersport team.
More, from a press release issued by Yamaha Racing:
Sam Lowes Strikes in Phillip Island with Yamaha
Sam Lowes made an impressive start to his World Supersport season aboard the Yakhnich Yamaha YZF-R6 in Phillip Island today, taking second on the podium in the shortened 15lap race. The young British rider started from the front having taken a blistering pole position yesterday in qualifying, over half a second clear of 2012 world Champion Kenan Sofuoglu with a 1â€™32.545. Sofuoglu led into turn one, but Lowes was quick to come back, passing in the second lap to regain the lead. The two went on to battle it out with countless passes over the fifteen laps, Sofuoglu finally getting the upper hand and winning by less than two seconds from Lowes.
Yakhnich Yamaha teammate Vladimir Leonov had an unfortunate start to his season, the Russian lucky to escape with only an elbow injury after coming off in the high-speed final corner, turn 12, on the third lap of the race when a rival fell in front of him. The race had been reduced to 15laps after safety concerns on tyre life.
The Championship will move next to the Motorland Aragon circuit in Spain for round two on the 14th April.
Sam Lowes, 2nd - +1.899secs -
â€œSofuoglu restrained me during the whole race, forcing me to cover the gas. He knew that if I could overtake him he couldnâ€™t win. It's a great start to the season, the bike is great and the team are working really well so I believe we can fight for the win!â€
Vladimir Leonov, DNF
â€œI had no luck in Phillip Island. During the morning warm up my bike was very fast but from the beginning of the race I was in traffic. De Rosa fell in front of me in a fast turn and I had no room to move so there was no chance to avoid a collision. We will go to Aragon and continue our work.â€
Claudio Corsetti, General Manager, Yakhnich Yamaha Motorsport -
â€œWe have two fast riders, Sam is very hard and goal-seeking. He dominated the whole weekend and tried to win from the start. Sofuoglu has admitted he has only one rival, Sam Lowes! I am upset for Vladimir as he could have been in the top five, but we go to Aragon knowing we can fight for the Championship title.â€