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Jun 23, 2002

Updated Post: Bayliss Wins Agains At Misano, Edwards Second

Copyright 2002, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc.<BR><BR>By Glenn Le Santo<BR><BR>Troy Bayliss took the win in race two at Misano for another double and to rack up an incredible 13 wins from 16 races.<BR><BR>At the start it actually looked as if we would have a different result as Neil Hodgson got the holeshot followed by Colin Edwards and then Bayliss. Edwards and Hodgson traded positions a couple of times on the opening laps and with Ben Bostrom looking to join the fray we had a battle on our hands.<BR><BR>Bayliss waited patiently until lap seven when he went past Edwards to take the lead. Edwards however was not going to give up easily and on the next corner in a breathtaking move he threw his Honda up the inside of Bayliss to retake first position.<BR><BR>Bayliss paced Edwards around the circuit and on lap 15 then passed the Texan again to take the lead. The Honda rider briefly took the lead once more on lap 17 but on the next lap Bayliss resumed his habitual place in front. The Australian then pulled the pin and put his head down for a charge to the line. Edwards rode the wheels off his machine but it just wasn't enough to beat the wonder from down under.<BR><BR>Nori Haga improved on his race one finish. He battled past Ruben Xaus and Ben Bostrom in the opening laps and then had a huge scrap with Neil Hodgson before he finally broke the English rider with a stunning move on lap 13.<BR><BR>Hodgson had ridden a mature ride and stayed with the leaders for the first 10 laps. He then started to drop back and once Haga had passed him he could do nothing to answer Haga¹s pace. <BR><BR>Meanwhile Xaus put it in the kitty litter for the second time that day, at the same turn, this time on lap six.<BR><BR>Ben Bostrom duplicated his race one result with a fifth and Gregorio Lavilla rounded out the top six as the best performing rider on a four-cylinder machine in race two after winning a race-long fight with Chili.<BR><BR>1. Troy Bayliss, Ducati 998F02, 25 laps, 40:07.599 <BR>2. Colin Edwards, Honda RC51, -3.329 <BR>3. Noriyuki Haga, Aprilia RSV1000, -8.447 <BR>4. Neil Hodgson, Ducati 998F01, -14.089 <BR>5. Ben Bostrom, Ducati 998F02, -21.484 <BR>6. Gregorio Lavilla, Suzuki GSX-R750Y, -36.166 <BR>7. Pierfrancesco Chili, Ducati 998RS, -36.544 <BR>8. Chris Walker, Kawasaki ZX-7RR, -44.766 <BR>9. Lucio Pedercini, Ducati 998RS, -60.252 <BR>10. Marco Borciani, Ducati 998RS, -66.518 <BR>11. Mauro Sanchini, Kawasaki ZX-7RR, -74.551 <BR>12. Steve Martin, Ducati 998RS, -76.338 <BR>13. Michele Malatesta, Ducati 996RS, -85.295 <BR>14. Broc Parkes, Ducati 998RS, -88.068 <BR>15. Bertrand Stey, Honda RC51, -1 lap <BR>16. Marjan Malec, Ducati 996RS, -1 lap <BR>17. Giuliano Sartoni, Ducati 996RS, -1 lap <BR>18. Peter Goddard, Benelli Tornado 900, -10 laps, DNF <BR>19. Ivan Clementi, Kawasaki ZX-7RR, -11 laps, DNF <BR>20. Paolo Blora, Ducati 996RS, -15 laps, DNF <BR>21. Mark Heckles, Honda RC51, -17 laps, DNF <BR>22. Serafino Foti, Ducati 996RS, -19 laps, DNF <BR>23. Ruben Xaus, Ducati 998F02, -20 laps, DNF <BR>24. James Toseland, Ducati 998F01, -21 laps, DNF <BR>25. Alessandro Antonello, Ducati 998RS, -23 laps, DNF <BR>26. Juan Borja, Ducati 998RS, -23 laps, DNF <BR>27. Alessandro Valia, Ducati 996RS, -25 laps, DNF<BR><BR>World Superbike Championship Standings:<BR><BR>1. Bayliss, 360 points <BR>2. Edwards, 311 points <BR>3. Hodgson, 194 points <BR>4. Haga, 182 points <BR>5. Bostrom, 165 points <BR>6. Xaus, 152 points <BR>7. Toseland, 107 points <BR>8. Walker, 97 points <BR>9. Lavilla, 84 points <BR>10. Chili, 77 points <BR><BR>More, from HM PLant Ducati:<BR><BR>Mixed fortunes for the HM Plant Ducatis<BR><BR>HM Plant Ducati/GSE Racing's Neil Hodgson just missed out on his second podium finish of the day at Misano after a superb display of aggressive riding against title rivals Troy Bayliss, Colin Edwards and Noriyuki Haga. Team-mate James Toseland retired his HM Plant Ducati on the fifth lap after a case of mistaken identity! The 21-year-old Yorkshireman was awarded a stop-and-go penalty, but mistook his signal for a black flag and pulled off the track at the first available opportunity.<BR><BR>As he had promised at the end of the first leg, Hodgson mixed it with the leading pair of Bayliss and Edwards from the start of the race. The 28-year-old HM Plant Ducati/GSE Racing star got the holeshot and participated in a tight tussle for the lead. Eventually he had to give way to the ‘Texan Tornado' and the reigning World Champion, with Bayliss taking the chequered flag for his 13th win from 16 starts in 2002. While Hodgson was unable to sustain the pace set by the leaders, he disputed the last rostrum position with a rejuvenated Haga until the closing stages of the race.<BR><BR>"I really enjoyed that race," said Hodgson after 25 gruelling laps. "I was determined to get off the line and prove that I could match the pace set by the front two [Bayliss and Edwards]. I'm at my best when the racing is as close as that at the front of the field, but I couldn't keep with them when they got by. Then, I ended up in a dogfight with Haga, which was better than riding around by myself as I had done in race one. Overall, I'm pleased with the progress that we've made this weekend and I've made up for the points that I lost at Lausitzring last time out."<BR><BR>Toseland's retirement came at the end of a day that had promised so much: "After qualifying fifth in Superpole, I was aiming to replicate that level of achievement in the races. Unfortunately, I was undone by my eagerness to get off the line quickly in the second race. I was penalised for a jump-start, but the guy holding the board with my number on gave me the impression that it was a black flag. I didn't want to fall foul of the officials, so I quickly turned off the track as a safety precaution."<BR><BR><BR>More, from Aprilia:<BR><BR>NORIYUKI HAGA AND APRILIA MAKE ROSTRUM AT MISANO <BR><BR>Misano (Rimini), Sunday 23 June - Noriyuki Haga came third in the second leg of the San Marino Superbike GP which took place at Misano in front of 68,000 spectators. The Japanese ace made his sixth podium this season. Haga rode the hundredth Superbike race in his career on the Adriatic circuit, strengthening his hold on fourth place in the World Championship ratings. In the first race, Nitro-Nori came fourth and, at the end of the day, he proved to have been the fastest rider on Dunlop tyres. The most exciting moment of the day was in race 2, when he managed to make sure British rider Neil Hodgson stayed off the rostrum with a spectacular pass on the Parco chicane. Both races took place in sweltering heat: 33 degrees in the air, 55 on the tarmac. <BR><BR>NORIYUKI HAGA (Playstation2 - FGF Aprilia Team rider) - "I was just knocked out by the effort - all I want to do now is to get back home and recoup in time for the USA GP on 14 July. The tarmac was boiling and halfway through the race the engine started giving off an overwhelming amount of heat. But that wasn't all: when I was in his slipstream, Hodgson's exhaust was blowing scorching air at me. Even so, I very happy. We tried out a new rear tyre from Dunlop which gave us some encouraging results." <BR><BR>GIACOMO GUIDOTTI (Technical Manager, Playstation2 - FGF Aprilia Team) - "We mounted a tyre we'd only received on Saturday morning. It didn't appear great in the tests, but then we changed the settings and things got much better. Now we've got some good groundwork done, so we'll be using what we've learnt for the next race at Laguna Seca. Being on the rostrum is always exciting but it's not enough. We're doing all we can to get back into top spot."<BR><BR><BR>More, from a Honda press release:<BR><BR>BAYLISS DOUBLE AT MISANO AS EDWARDS CONTINUES CHARGE IN SEASON-LONG DOUBLE ACT<BR><BR>Defending world champion Troy Bayliss won both races of Sunday's eighth round of the World Superbike championship as Castrol Honda's Colin Edwards kept up the pressure on the Australian with two runner places after leading both 25-lap races.<BR><BR>Edwards set the early pace in the opening race, passing Bayliss at the third corner of the first lap. The SP-2 rider controlled the race until lap 10 as Bayliss took up the running and set about recording his 12th victory of the year all on his spare machine. His team were forced to roll his number one machine off the starting grid with a technical problem.<BR><BR>Edwards maintained the pressure on Bayliss in the sweltering Misano heat and crossed the finish line just 2.9s behind. Edwards said: "There wasn't really any more I could do. I wanted to make the break at the start but that didn't come off and when Troy came by I sat with him and had a look at what his machine and tyres were doing."<BR><BR>He continued: "As the race went on the heat took its toll on the tyres and there was nothing I could do to get close to Troy. I made a mistake on the lap that Troy passed me and that unsettled me a little. I missed a gear through a left-hander and I knew Troy was right behind me so he can't have been far from clipping my rear wheel."<BR><BR>Bayliss and Edwards once more showed the 2002 superiority of the Michelin tyres with Edwards crossing the finish line 12 seconds ahead of the private Ducati of Neil Hodgson.<BR><BR>Hodgson held third place throughout and was followed home by the twin-cylinder machines of Aprilia's Noriyuki Haga and Ducati's Ben Bostrom. Veteran Pier-Francesco Chili took sixth place while Kawasaki's Chris Walker won a race-long battle with James Toseland for seventh.<BR><BR>Edwards was again quick to hit the front in the second outing, passing holeshot rider Hodgson on lap two, only for the British rider to hit back. Edwards edged Hodgson out for the second and final time on the fifth lap and immediately eased open a gap.<BR><BR>The lap six action included Ruben Xaus crashing the factory Ducati lasting two laps longer than he did in the opening race, both times the Spaniard escaped injury. Bayliss and Edwards then swapped places a lap later but it was a determined Edwards who maintained the lead until the 15th lap when Bayliss once more took over.<BR><BR>Bayliss took advantage as Edwards began to lose traction and the Australian sealed his second win of the day by three seconds. Edwards' second place once more proved that the pairing were in control at the head of the field.<BR><BR>Edwards said: "I'm trying everything I know out there and I feel like I'm riding as well as I ever had. Maybe I just need that little bit of bottom end power that I lacked in Germany two weeks ago. I couldn't do much in the last 10 laps, the rear tyre was sideways out of every corner."<BR><BR>He continued: "Once Troy got in front I was intent on staying with him and it worked for a while but I'd cooked the rear tyre and it was spinning off the corner where his wasn't. I don't know what it is I have to do to get the better of Troy but I'll never stop trying. We've got my home round at Laguna Seca next and I'm planning on winning there."<BR><BR>Noriyuki Haga took his first podium finish for three rounds with third place, overhauling Hodgson as the Briton took fourth to defend his third place in the championship. Bostrom repeated his fifth place of the earlier race while Suzuki's Gregorio Lavilla improved from an opening race 10th to take sixth.<BR><BR>Lavilla's sixth place came after he held off the charging Chili who made an unsuccessful, daring last corner move on his Spanish rival. Walker took eighth while his first race challenger Toseland misread a ‘stop-and-go' penalty instruction for a jump start and stopped on the circuit, believing he had a technical problem with his machine.<BR><BR>HRC kit SP-2 rider Mark Heckles took 19th place in the first race but was forced out of race two on the ninth lap with a broken footrest on his Castrol Honda Rumi machine.<BR><BR><BR>Ten Kate Honda team's Fabien Foret made up for the disappointment of the last round as he rode into the lead of the World Supersport championship with victory in a sensational race at Misano.<BR><BR>Foret was one of six riders to lead the 23-lap battle including championship leader before Misano, Stephane Chambon who crashed while leading on the second lap, remounted in 30th place and finished 13th.<BR><BR>Victory for Foret was his third of the year as he pipped Suzuki's Katsuaki Fujiwara by 0.086s. James Whitham took third place on a Yamaha after the first three plus Paolo Casoli and Christian Kellner were locked in a five-way tussle for most of the race.<BR><BR>Winner Foret said: "After winning the last round in Germany then being excluded on a minor technicality I wanted revenge today. I tried to makethe break at the start of the race but, after a while, I realised there was nothing I could do to get away. I then sat in there and waited for the closing stages of the race."<BR><BR>Kellner finished fourth with Casoli dropping back to a lonely fifth place. Reigning champion Andrew Pitt was relegated from first to fourth place halfway around the eighth lap before the Australian then ran wide and lost his chance of victory, eventually finishing sixth.<BR><BR>CBR600 Hondas filled the next three places with BKM's Christophe Cogan seventh, van Zon team's Chris Vermeulen eighth and Cogan's team-mate Robert Ulm ninth.<BR><BR><BR>More, from a release issued by Bayliss' publicist:<BR><BR>BAYLISS EXTENDS WINNING STREAK WITH A DOUBLE VICTORY IN ITALY<BR><BR>Misano, Italy (Sunday, June 23) - In front of an emphatic Italian crowd, Australia's defending World Superbike Champion Troy Bayliss has won both races at today's San Marino round of the Superbike World Championship, taking his tally of race victories for the season to thirteen from the sixteen races held to date.<BR><BR>Today's victories see him equal multiple World Superbike champion Carl Fogarty's tally of thirteen wins in one season, the second highest and closing on the all-time season record of seventeen wins in one season, held by American Doug Polen on his way to winning the 1991 World Championship.<BR><BR>More importantly for Bayliss is that he now leads the Superbike World Championship with a total of 360 points, forty-nine clear of arch rival Colin Edwards, who finished second to Bayliss in both 25-lap races today. <BR><BR>The double race victory, his sixth of the season, capped off another dominant weekend for the Infostrada Ducati rider. He secured his fourth pole position of the year, by shattering the lap record by almost two seconds, before setting a new Superbike lap record on lap two of the opening race with a time of 1-min 34.913-secs around the 4.060km circuit.<BR><BR>With temperatures rising to the mid thirties with the track temperature rising to above 50ºC, Bayliss battled with Edwards in the opening laps of the first race before taking the race lead on lap ten with a slipstreaming move down the fast back straight. Once in the race lead he slowly worked away at building a buffer over Edwards and at the conclusion of 25-laps was 2.906 seconds clear of the American, with Britain's Neil Hodgson third aboard his HM Plant Ducati.<BR><BR>Race two saw Bayliss trailing Hodgson and Edwards in the opening laps before passing first, Hodgson on lap six and then Edwards a lap later to take the race lead momentarily. He ran wide at the end of the fast back straight allowing Edwards to regain the race lead. The pair began to battle closely until lap 18 when Bayliss took the race lead and applied the pressure once more and eased away to his second win of the day by 3.329 seconds from Edwards. Japan's Noriyuki Haga (Playstation2 Aprilia) took third ahead of Hodgson, with Ben Bostrom (L&M Ducati) making it a pair of fifths for the day.<BR><BR>"Everything worked out perfect today, it was a really good result and it's always great to win in Italy especially in front of so many fans," said Bayliss. "The conditions here have also made it a very hard weekend for us. With the temperature so high, it's not to be caught behind others out on the track as the fumes and heat from the exhausts make it quite difficult to breathe. You can stay behind someone for a little while but not too long.<BR><BR>"There was a bit of a problem on the start line of the first race when the bike wouldn't start, but the Infostrada Ducati team is working so well that my other bike was ready in pit lane with the exact same settings as I had on the other bike and I barely felt the difference once the race started. For me the second race was a lot more interesting. Colin was trying very hard in the early laps to break away and I was back in third behind him and Neil Hodgson. The fumes and the heat started to get to me as I followed them, so I pushed harder to get by and it was better out in front. I used the same tyre as I did in the first race, but had to work harder as the track was about 10ºC hotter made things a bit more slippery. We also had the bike set up slightly different than normal with a shorter wheelbase so that it would steer quicker. The only problem with that was that the rear of the bike was snapping around a lot more than usual, but it was OK."<BR><BR>The Superbike World Championship has a three-week break before taking to the Laguna Seca Raceway in California for round nine of the championship on July 13 - 14.<BR><BR><BR>More, from a Ducati press release: <BR><BR>BAYLISS (DUCATI INFOSTRADA) BRAVES MISANO HEAT TO TAKE SIXTH DOUBLE WIN<BR><BR>BOSTROM (DUCATI L&M) TWICE BATTLES TO FIFTH – XAUS (DUCATI INFOSTRADA) CRASHES OUT<BR><BR>Troy Bayliss (Ducati Infostrada) continued his extraordinarily successful season with his sixth double win of the year, in round 8 of the World Superbike Championship at a scorching Misano Adriatico. In front of a record 68,000 fans, the Australian world champion had to beat off the challenge from Honda's Colin Edwards, who twice finished runner-up. Ben Bostrom (Ducati L&M) started from the second slot on the grid but had to make do with two fifth places, while Ruben Xaus (Ducati Infostrada) had an unhappy weekend, crashing out early in both races. Britain's Neil Hodgson (HM Plant Ducati) was third in the first race while the final podium place in race 2 went to Noriyuki Haga (Aprilia).<BR><BR>For the second time this year, Bayliss (Ducati Infostrada) had to change bikes just minutes before the start after a clutch problem developed, but after trailing Colin for the first 9 laps, he then powered past the Texan before the Curva del Tramonto. "Everything went well for me at the end but we had to throw a little bit of drama in on the start-line when I had a clutch problem and had to switch bikes. That's no real problem as I can't tell them apart and I came to the start grid last and kept nice and cool" declared Troy. "I followed Colin for a while, it was really hot behind the exhausts and it takes your breath away so I didn't think it was a good idea to stay there for too long. I got past Colin and then had another little drama when my left-hand handgrip was working its way off but I'm happy with the result". <BR><BR>In race 2 Bayliss and Edwards again traded places at the front with several spectacular passing moves at the Tramonto but the Australian eventually got the better of the Texan on lap 18 and made it stick until the chequered flag with an impressive series of quick laps, taking his thirteenth win of the season. "Maybe my winning streak will stop at Laguna, where I've never had any really good results!" he added. "But I'm looking forward to going there this year because Michelin are coming out with some great tyres. It's been a really hot and hard weekend here at Misano, Colin rode a couple of fantastic races but what I'm looking forward now more than anything is a cold beer!".<BR><BR>A wrong choice of tyre in race 1 left Bostrom (Ducati L&M) struggling throughout the 25 laps. "I picked the wrong tyre, different to Neil and Nori and I couldn't even lean the bike over the way I want to. I was sure I could have got onto the podium but after the first lap the tyre started to get real hot and I thought ‘that was that'. <BR><BR>"I changed the tyre for the second race and rode really hard but unfortunately the result was the same, I was just spinning the rear wheel coming out onto the back straight. I gained two-tenths in every lap and I was riding so hard but as the race went on I was having less and less grip. Pity, I was really looking forward to this race, now it'll have to be Laguna".<BR><BR>Xaus (Ducati Infostrada) had a difficult weekend, crashing out on lap 4 of race 1 and then lap 6 of the second race. "There's nothing to say, I just lost control in both races and crashed and I'm very disappointed. I was hoping to get some more points on the board and move up the table".<BR><BR><BR>More, from a Suzuki press release:<BR><BR>SIXTH PLACE FOR LAVILLA IN SAN MARINO<BR><BR>Team Alstare Suzuki rider Gregorio Lavilla recorded a superb sixth place at the San Marino round of the Superbike World Championship at Misano today. <BR><BR>The Spaniard had a tremendous race-long battle with former Suzuki Alstare rider Pierfrancesco Chili during the second race, and would not let the Italian get away from him. Instead, Gregorio emerged the stronger and deservedly took sixth place by nearly half a second. <BR><BR>A tyre problem in the first race prevented Gregorio from getting a good result. Despite many lurid slides, he kept going and finished tenth. <BR><BR>Both races today were won by Troy Bayliss (Ducati). <BR><BR>GREGORIO LAVILLA - Race 1: 10th, Race 2: 6th<BR><BR>"I'm happy to get my best result of the season in the second race after a great fight with Chili. It was good fun! And maybe I could've got a good result in the first race as well, if it was not for a tyre problem. It was very hard work, especially in these very hot conditions. I made a good start in the first race but very soon my tyre behaved a bit strangely and I it didn't work as well as the same one yesterday. I nearly highsided a couple of times! I lost touch with the leaders and that was that. In race two, we used the same set-up and the same tyre and it worked really well and I lapped over a second a lap quicker. I'm really pleased with the weekend's results."<BR>
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