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Feb 18, 2014

Sofuoglu On Top, Jacobsen Second As World Supersport Test Ends At Phillip Island

Kenan Sofuoglu (54) in action at Phillip Island.

FIM Supersport World Championship Test

Phillip Island, Victoria, Australia

February 18, 2014

Combined Test Results (all on Pirelli tires):

1. Kenan Sofuoglu, Turkey (Kawasaki ZX-6R), 1:33.506

2. PJ Jacobsen, USA (Kawasaki ZX-6R), 1:33.787

3. Michael Vd Mark, Netherlands (Honda CBR600RR), 1:33.918

4. Jules Cluzel, France (MV Agusta F3 675), 1:33.984

5. Rathapark Wilairot, Thailand (Honda CBR600RR), 1:33.987

6. Kevin Coghlan, UK (Yamaha YZF-R6), 1:34.072

7. Fabio Menghi, Italy (Yamaha YZF-R6), 1:34.233

8. Vladimir Leonov, Russia (MV Agusta F3 675), 1:34.295

9. Roberto Tamburini, Italy (Kawasaki ZX-6R), 1:34.301

10. Jack Kennedy, Ireland (Honda CBR600RR), 1:34.393

11. Riccardo Russo, Italy (Honda CBR600RR), 1:34.550

12. Lorenzo Zanetti, Italy (Honda CBR600RR), 1:34.591

13. Bryan Staring, Australia (Honda CBR600RR), 1:34.733

14. Florian Marino, France (Kawasaki ZX-10R), 1:34.747

15. Raffaele De Rosa, Italy (Honda CBR600RR), 1:34.834

16.  Kevin Wahr, Germany (Yamaha YZF-R6), 1:35.152

17. Christian Gamarino, Italy (Kawasaki ZX-6R), 1:35.320

18. Graeme Gowland, UK (Triumph Daytona 675R), 1:35.324

19. Billy McConnell, Australia (Triumph Daytona 675R), 1:35.351

20. Nacho Calero, Spain (Honda CBR600RR), 1:35.370

21. Marco Bussolotti, Italy (Honda CBR600RR), 1:35.533

22. Tony Coveña, Netherlands (Kawasaki ZX-6R), 1:35.599

23. Roberto Rolfo, Italy (Kawasaki ZX-6R), 1:35.740

24. Fraser Rogers, UK (Honda CBR600RR), 1:36.956

25. Ryan Taylor, Australia (Yamaha YZF-R6), 1:36.969

26. Alexey Ivanov, Russia (Yamaha YZF-R6), 1:37.123

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

Mahi Racing Team India's Kenan Sofuoglu ended the two day official test on top courtesy of the 1'33.506 lap-time set during the very first session yesterday morning. The three time Supersport World Champion did not manage to improve throughout the second day two, whilst other riders significantly lowered their times to bridge the gap to the leader.

American WSS rookie PJ Jacobsen (Intermoto Ponyexpres Kawasaki) made the most of the near perfect weather conditions this afternoon to climb up to an impressive second position, lapping one second faster than yesterday, on his first appearance at Phillip Island. Michael van der Mark (Pata Honda) hung on to a top 3 position overall after matching his time from yesterday.

After the technical problem suffered yesterday, World Supersport returnee Jules Cluzel (MV Agusta RC – Yakhnich Motorsport) gave a glimpse of his former WSS speed elevating himself to fourth overall, ahead of series debutant Ratthapark Wilairot (Core PTR Honda). Yamaha was well represented by Kev Coghlan (DMC-Panavto Yamaha) and Italian Fabio Menghi (VFT Yamaha), who finished sixth and seventh respectively.

Local rider Bryan Staring (Rivamoto Honda) did well in his return to the Supersport class (he is a former Australian Supersport Champion) ending the two day test in thirteenth position.

More, from a press release issued by Kawasaki:

Sofuoglu Flies In Final Pre-Season Test

Newsflash, 18 February 2014

Kenan Sofuoglu (Kawasaki Mahi Racing Team India) made great progress throughout a two-day test at Phillip Island to lead the official time sheets just days before the season starts for real.

Sofuoglu used his experience to set his machine up for race distance performance during the tests yet still managed to be fastest rider of all, with a 1’33.506. This pace was more than two tenths ahead of second fastest man, Patrick Jacobsen (Kawasaki Intermoto Ponyexpres) who joins the championship this year as a rookie.

Now Sofuoglu, the world champion for Kawasaki in 2012, will look to improve his pure pace around the racetrack to make sure he can qualify well for the first round of the championship, which will take place at Phillip Island on Sunday 23rd February.

As the season draws near Sofuoglu will be out to score his fourth WSS Championship title and improve on his record total of 26 race wins at this level.

Kenan Sofuoglu: “It looks like we are in quite good shape and I have good experience of Phillip Island. In the WSS class the key is to make your tyre run for full race distance. Since we first arrived yesterday my speed was already very fast, so I was focused today to make a long run with the tyres and today in the afternoon I found the pace I wanted. I did not try to improve my lap time or try and set a 1’32. And I think I will focus on being faster once we get to the race weekend. We have changed the bike a little bit from last year, on the suspension for example, and it looks like it is quite good. My team is improved because there is more experience in the team now. They did a very good job at these tests but I cannot say we touched the bike too much. If everything carries on in a good way we can fight for the win.”

More, from a press release issued by CIA Insurance Honda:


CIA INSURANCE HONDA’S Jack Kennedy missed the second day of testing at Phillip Island due to injury but his time from the opening day was good enough to keep him 10th on the combined time sheets.

Jack had an operation on the tallus bone in his right ankle and is determined to try and race this weekend.

Nacho Calero finished 20th on his CIA Insurance Honda, also relying on his fastest time from the opening day after missing the afternoon session while his team repaired his bike after a heavy morning crash.

CIA Insurance Honda will enjoy two further practice sessions on Friday before further practice and qualification on Saturday. The race takes place at Phillip Island in Australia at 1310 local time on Sunday, February 23rd.

Jack: “I had a big crash yesterday but we have acted quickly and I’ve already had an operation on my ankle. I really want to race this weekend so I am not ruling it out, I am going to rest and do my best to see if I can get on track on Friday or Saturday. My CIA Insurance Honda is good and we could still score good points even injured.”

Simon Buckmaster, CIA Insurance Honda Team Manager: “Jack and the team are determined to do all they can to get him racing this weekend. He’s suffered a painful ankle injury but there is a chance he could race and we’ll take it if we can. Even missing a day he remains in the top 10 which shows what talent he has and how well he is gelling with the team.

“Nacho had a big crash this morning and thankfully was unhurt. His bike however, was in bad shape and we could not get it fixed in time for the afternoon. I am impressed by his approach to the test and his efforts – come the weekend there is no doubt he can challenge for points and we will be pushing all the way.”

More, from a press release issued by CORE PTR Honda:


CORE’ PTR HONDA’S Ratthapark Wilairot showed real potential when he made a big step improvement to finish the two day test at Phillip Island in fifth place, less than half a second from the top of the timesheets.

Ratthapark took over 1-second off his lap time yesterday. He worked well with his team, improving the bike and himself to improve his lap times.

Raffaele De Rosa also improved his lap times but finished 15th overall, on only his second day on the bike and with the team.

Both racers will enjoy two further practice sessions on Friday before further practice and qualification on Saturday. The race takes place at Phillip Island in Australia at1310 local time on Sunday, February 23rd.

Ratthapark: “That was a better session and I am starting to learn more about my Core’ PTR Honda and how it handles and works. We worked hard today and made some mistakes as well as progress. It is all learning and I am sure we can improve again during the race weekend.”

Simon Buckmaster, Core’ PTR Honda Team Manager: “Film (Ratthapark) did a great job today and is getting more and more comfortable on his Core’ PTR Honda. He has undoubted potential and is still learning, there is more to come.

“Raffaele improved over yesterday but we need to find more together because he can be a top 10 or better for sure. Part of that is from the bike and part of it will come from him – it is only his second day on the bike since last year so there is a lot of improvement possible.”

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