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Oct 4, 2013

Guintoli On Provisional World Superbike Pole Position At Magny-Cours

eni FIM Superbike World Championship: Sylvain Guintoli (50).
eni FIM Superbike World Championship
Magny-Cours, France
October 4, 2013
Qualifying Session One Results (all on Pirelli tires):

1. Sylvain GUINTOLI, France (Aprilia RSV4 Factory), 1:38.709
2. Tom SYKES, UK (Kawasaki ZX-10R), 1:39.095
3. Chaz DAVIES, UK (BMW S1000RR), 1:39.378
4. Jules CLUZEL, France (Suzuki GSX-R1000), 1:39.380
5. Eugene LAVERTY, Ireland (Aprilia RSV4 Factory), 1:39.451
6. Davide GIUGLIANO, Italy (Aprilia RSV4 Factory), 1:39.549
7. Vincent PHILIPPE, France (Suzuki GSX-R1000), 1:39.579
8. Marco MELANDRI, Italy (BMW S1000RR), 1:39.678
9. Michel FABRIZIO, Italy (Honda CBR1000RR), 1:39.799
10. Michele PIRRO, Italy (Ducati 1199 Panigale R), 1:39.821
11. David SALOM, Spain (Kawasaki ZX-10R), 1:40.085
12. Leon HASLAM, UK (Honda CBR1000RR), 1:40.202
13. Ayrton BADOVINI, Italy (Ducati 1199 Panigale R), 1:40.263
14. Lorenzo LANZI, Italy (Ducati 1098R), 1:40.352
15. Toni ELIAS, Spain (Aprilia RSV4 Factory), 1:40.483
16. Mark AITCHISON, Australia (Kawasaki ZX-10R), 1:41.137
17. Federico SANDI, Italy (Kawasaki ZX-10R), 1:41.281
18. Fabrizio LAI, Italy (Ducati 1199 Panigale), 1:42.474
19. Vittorio IANNUZZO, Italy (BMW S1000RR), 1:43.180

More, from a press release issued by Althea Racing:

First practice and qualifying for team Althea and Davide Giugliano at Magny Cours

Only a week has passed since the Laguna Seca race, in which Davide Giugliano was one of the protagonists, and today team Althea Racing was already out on track at Magny Cours where the thirteenth round of the World Superbike championship is taking place this weekend. Riders were greeted with cloudy skies and a damp track for the first practice session this morning. Giugliano, as well as most of the other riders, preferred to complete just a few laps on what was a very slippery track. With a time of 1’45”797, Davide concluded the session in ninth position. In the first qualifying session, the track was almost completely dry and this allowed the Althea rider and technicians to work hard to improve the set-up of their RSV4. By the end of the session, Giugliano had recorded the sixth fastest time (1’39”549). A positive first day in which Davide is not far from the leaders with a bike that is already well set up.

Davide Giugliano : “Today went quite well. We’re working in the right way on the bike and were able to go fast right from the start. This morning the track was damp and so we just made a few laps in case conditions are similar tomorrow or Sunday. In the afternoon, on a dry track, we were able to work much better. I’m pleased because we only used one set of tyres and are not far from the leaders. Of course there is still room for improvement but overall it’s been a positive day. Tomorrow I hope it stays try so we can continue to improve.”

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

Room for improvement for Team SBK Ducati Alstare at Magny-Cours

Nevers (France), Friday 4 October 2013: Ayrton Badovini and Michele Pirro (Ducati Alstare) took to the Magny-Cours racetrack in France today for the first practice and qualifying sessions of this thirteenth round of the World Superbike championship.

On a damp track and in cool conditions, Ayrton and Michele took part in the weekend’s first practice session. The track began to dry out in part towards the end of the 45-minute session and times therefore began to drop. Ayrton recorded his best time in the final stages, closing in fourth place with a lap time of 1’43.8. Michele Pirro, taking part in his first weekend of Superbike competition, spent time working with his technicians in order to begin to set-up the bike to suit both rider and track. He made consistent progress, concluding in eighth place with a time of 1’44.3.

A short sharp rain shower just before first qualifying this afternoon did not prevent riders from recording some fast lap times. Starting to build confidence with both the new bike and the track, Michele made significant improvement during the session, registering his fastest lap in the final seconds (1’38.8) to close in tenth place. Ayrton, citing problems during braking, closed in thirteenth position with a best time of 1’40.2.

Ayrton Badovini: “Today was difficult, both in terms of the track conditions and due to the fact that we still haven’t been able to find a good set-up for my bike on this track. This morning I was only able to complete ten laps but nevertheless finished fourth. In the afternoon I hoped to improve and remain inside the top positions but unfortunately we were unable to do so. I hope it doesn’t rain tomorrow so that we can continue to work and be ready for the Superpole.”

Michele Pirro: “I’m sorry that Carlos is unable to finish the season but I’m pleased to have this opportunity here this weekend. Conditions this morning were not easy but this afternoon we made a set-up modification and I was more comfortable, we were able to improve. Tomorrow we still have work to do in order to close the gap, as today we were a second from the leaders. There is room for improvement of course, especially through the second part of the turns, but considering today was my first day on track I’m quite satisfied. We’ll do everything we can to take a good result this weekend.”

More, from a press release issued by Aprilia:



Magny-Cours, 4 October 2013 – The weather, always a key factor at Magny-Cours, had an impact again this year on the first day of World Superbike practice today. The damp track in the morning allowed the riders to go out on slicks only in the last portion of the free practice sessions where home star, Sylvain Guintoli, put in the second best time despite only taking a total of six laps.

Ninth best time, on the other hand, went to his team mate Eugene Laverty, fresh off of his victory at Laguna Seca but encountering a few difficulties on the French track with his RSV4 settings.

In spite of threatening clouds, the afternoon qualifiers were held on a basically dry track. Times dropped drastically although nothing close to the best potential of the category. At the end of the 45 minute session Sylvain Guintoli was at the top, consistently fast and putting in excellent times even on a used tyre. Once the electronics on his RSV4 had been fine tuned Eguene Laverty also took a big step forward, stopping the clock with the fifth best time at less than a tenth of a second from a virtual podium finish for the day.

For both Aprilia standard bearers, who theoretically could take the Manufacturer Title early by the end of the Magny-Cours round, tomorrow promises to be a decisive day. First of all for Superpole, given the poor chances of overtaking on the French track, and also because of the usual work they will be doing on sharpening race pace.

Sylvain Guintoli: “Today was a good day for us, not only because of the best time in the qualifiers but above all because of the feeling I have with my RSV4 here at Magny-Cours. I did my fast lap on a ten-lap old tyre and that means that we are definitely moving in the right direction. I want to focus on riding and being fast in every session. The first day went well, but what happens on Sunday is what counts!”

Eugene Laverty: “We lost half of the first session because of the weather and then we had some problems with the engine brake and traction control settings. Toward the end of the qualifiers we managed to close the gap on the front runners, but we still have a lot of work to do if we want to be consistently fast. We'll analyse the data this evening so we can come out for tomorrow's sessions in the best possible shape”.

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

Impressive first day all-round for FIXI Crescent Suzuki

FIXI Crescent Suzuki had a very positive opening day to this weekend’s eni FIM Superbike World Championship at Magny-Cours as Jules Cluzel took the fourth quickest time in qualifying and stand-in rider Vincent Philippe impressed on his debut.

Cluzel was consistently with the front-runners in both of today’s sessions, even heading the timesheets during this morning’s free practice in difficult conditions. He continued with this form into the first qualifying this afternoon and was regularly in the top-five, before eventually ending the session in fourth, just 0.671 from the top-spot. Cluzel is convinced he will be able to improve as the weekend continues and is eager to get a good result in front of his home crowd.

Philippe turned heads during his first-ever session on a Superbike as he immediately topped the time sheets in the damp conditions of this morning’s free practice. He quickly settled into a smooth riding rhythm on the Yoshimura-powered GSX-R that was reminiscent of his World Endurance Championship style. This afternoon he was able to learn more about the bike in dry conditions and continued to impress as he recorded the seventh fastest time around the 4,411m French circuit. Philippe will be looking to improve further tomorrow and learn more about the bike as he heads towards his first races in World Superbike. The Frenchman was at Magny-Cours today as a substitute for the injured Leon Camier who is still recovering from the damage he sustained in Turkey. He had some of the pins removed from his foot this week and is continuing with a thorough fitness schedule to be fit for the final race of the season at Jerez.

Today’s sessions were held in very changeable conditions with a constant threat of heavy rain always in the air. Sylvain Guintoli set the fastest time in the first qualifying session, but with rain forecast for tomorrow morning, this afternoon’s times look like being the ones that will decide the Superpole positions for tomorrow afternoon.

Jules Cluzel:
“I am happy with today, because we were around the fourth of fifth position, maybe tomorrow second or third and then hopefully we can arrive at the first position on Sunday! I feel like it is easy to be fast, but I’m struggling to enjoy the bike because it is moving and spinning a lot. I think this is mostly due to the track condition, it’s not the best and hopefully we won’t have any more rain for tomorrow. Today a lot of rain was expected, but it never happened, but it is forecast for tonight so maybe we’ll have these conditions tomorrow. I am only 0.6 from the leader, but I think it was possible to be faster, because at the end if we had put in the new tyre I could have been quicker. This is not the race today though and we have already made Superpole if it is raining tomorrow, so we have to be happy where we are. It looks like we have a good pace and this is important if the weather is bad tomorrow and we cannot do any more dry testing.”

Vincent Philippe:
“It was a really good day for me and I am very happy. With the bad conditions on track this morning, I know these well and it was quite easy for me to adapt to the bike. The bike and the experience of the team really helped me, but I didn’t expect to go so well, so I think in these conditions I will be ok. In the dry I didn’t know how the bike behaved or how the tyres worked and I thought it would be difficult, but now when I see the lap-times I am really happy - to be where I am is really good. I had a good feeling from the front and rear tyres and the FIXI Crescent Suzuki is easy to ride and the electronics work very well. I had a little problem with the old tyre at the end of the session, so I need to try again tomorrow and see how my lines are and learn about the power of the bike, because in Endurance we use standard engines and they are very different to the Superbike. I am looking forward to tomorrow and the rest of the weekend, it is good to be here and I need to try some more things, especially the old tyre.”

Paul Denning – Team Manager:
“As always seems to be the case Magny Cours brought quite mixed weather and difficult conditions for all the riders, but the track was good enough to at least use slicks and despite the low grip levels we were able to get some decent set-up work started. Jules is growing in confidence week-by-week and I think that his Superbike riding technique has improved on this type of slow-speed circuit compared to the start of the year. This means he is able to handle the slow-corner exits and slow-speed chicanes much better and understand how to get the bike around the track quickly and it is showing in the lap-times.
“Vincent has done a stunning job for his first day on a brand-new bike and on the Pirelli tyres that he has never used before. Ok he knows the track very well, but even so I don’t think any of us expected him to settle in so quickly with the machine. It is a GSX-R, but it is very different to the World Endurance Championship bike that he usually campaigns. It has been a pleasure working with him on the first day, he’s a gentleman and obviously a very fast rider, so let’s see what the rest of the weekend can bring.”

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

Magny-Cours – Free Practice & Qualifying Practice 1.
Friday, 4th October 2013.

Weather conditions: Cloudy with drops of rain.
Temperature: Air: 18-19 °C, Track: 19-21°C
Number of riders participating: 19/19 from 13/13 teams
Fastest lap Free Practice: Michel Fabrizio (Pata Honda World SBK) 1:42.938 min
Fastest lap Qualifying Practice 1: Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia Racing Team) 1:38.709 min

The BMW Motorrad Goldbet SBK Team got off to a strong start on Friday at “Circuit de Nevers, Magny-Cours” (FRA). Factory rider Chaz Davies (GBR) qualified third on the provisional front row in today’s first qualifying practice for the thirteenth round of the 2013 FIM Superbike World Championship. Marco Melandri (ITA) finished eighth after three outings in the qualifying practice, improving his lap time on each outing. In the morning’s free practice the track was wet following overnight rainfall. Chaz posted the third fastest time as the track was drying towards the end of the session while Marco opted to remain in the garage after his outing and was therefore eighteenth.

In the FIM Superstock 1000 Cup, Greg Gildenhuys (RSA) who rode at Magny-Cours for the first time last year, qualified eleventh on his BMW HP4. Championship leader, Sylvain Barrier (FRA) qualified sixteenth after pulling into the pits with a small issue in the first ten minutes of the qualifying session. Before he could get back out it started to rain, meaning he could not improve his time.

Chaz Davies:?
Fastest lap Free Practice: 1:43.842 min (P3) /Fastest lap Qualifying Practice 1: 1:39.378 min (P3)
“The position wasn’t too bad today but I’m not overly happy. I think we can improve the setting a decent amount. Considering how far away I feel we’re actually not too far away on the timesheets. We were lucky to have a dry day after the weather has been so mixed. It’s good to get some set up info for Sunday because it is meant to be dry but you never know. Generally it’s not been a bad day but there’s room for improvement. We’ve been working on the suspension mostly today; tomorrow we need to work more on the rear of the bike. We found a little bit more grip on my last outing but generally we need some more stability.”

Marco Melandri:?
Fastest lap Free Practice: 1:53.012min (P18) /Fastest lap Qualifying Practice 1: 1:39.678 min (P8)?
“Today the weather conditions were not easy. This morning in the free practice, the weather meant we could not make the best use of the session. In the afternoon in the first qualifying session the track was almost dry but there were still wet patches. Despite this we were able to improve, especially with the rear end. I’m still struggling with the front when entering the corner and the race pace is not close to the riders at the front. We will have to do our best to utilise the data we collected from the qualifying to set up the bike. For tomorrow I hope to have consistent weather, completely dry or wet.”?

Serafino Foti (Sport Director BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK Team):
“Today we worked for the races and we improved, even if we still have room for more. Overall we’re quite satisfied, Chaz is third and Marco is eight and should it rain tomorrow both riders would still qualify for Superpole. Today weather conditions were difficult. This morning free practice was not used completely, while in the afternoon the track was still a little wet. Anyhow the weather conditions were the same for everyone.

In Superstock 1000, Greg is eleventh while Sylvain is a bit further back. In the qualifying session he had an issue and, unluckily, when it was fixed it had started to rain again and he could not improve. For sure tomorrow he’ll be able to return to his normal level.”

Andrea Dosoli (Technical Director BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK Team):
“It has been a tough day. In the morning we lost track time due to the conditions. We used the afternoon session to work on the machine. We are still far from the top guys and we are losing time mainly in the first sector. Both riders have improved the feeling during the session but both are struggling going into the corner. Marco is not confident with the front end of the bike and this is the area where our engineers will focus for tomorrow morning. Chaz and his crew will work on the setting but also on engine brake management. It is clear where we are losing and now we will improve the machine. We are confident that tomorrow we can offer a better package to both riders.”
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