Wins for Biaggi and Spies at Brno, Haga keeps points lead Max Biaggi (Aprilia) and Ben Spies (Yamaha) scored a win apiece in round 10 of the Hannspree FIM Superbike World Championship at Brno in front of record 75,000 crowd. In race 1 the 25 ...
Wins for Biaggi and Spies at Brno, Haga keeps points lead
Max Biaggi (Aprilia) and Ben Spies (Yamaha) scored a win apiece in round 10 of the Hannspree FIM Superbike World Championship at Brno in front of record 75,000 crowd. In race 1 the 25 points went to Biaggi after Spies had been wiped out by Michel Fabrizio (Ducati Xerox), giving Aprilia its first win in its return season to WSB. The second race saw Spies take a deserved victory, after the American managed to hold off Biaggi in the final stages. Fabrizio finished third, while points leader Noriyuki Haga, still not in the best of physical condition, limited the damage and managed to hold on to his championship lead by seven points.
Biaggi scored his first win of the season and his first win since Vallelunga 2007 in the opening race at Brno in the Czech Republic. It was also Aprilia's first win in the category since Regis Laconi's victory at Imola in 2001. Second and third went to the Hannspree Ten Kate Honda duo of Carlos Checa and Jonathan Rea. Biaggi actually had a lonely run to the chequered flag after the other two favourites Spies and Fabrizio were eliminated when the Italian crashed in a fast left-hander, taking down his American rival with him. It was a great day also for the other new manufacturer to the series, BMW, who had the satisfaction of seeing Troy Corser lead the opening two laps, the Australian eventually finishing fifth to score the team's best result this season. Shane Byrne (Sterilgarda Ducati) got another good result for the Italian team in sixth. It wasn't all good news for BMW however as Ruben Xaus crashed out on the opening lap, fracturing the femur bone in his right leg in the process. Sixth place went to Czech rider Jakub Smrz (Guandakini Ducati), who recovered well to score a good result in front of his home crowd. Seventh was Leon Haslam (Stiggy Racing Honda) and eighth Noriyuki Haga (Ducati Xerox), who ran a defensive race to try and score as many points as possible. Makoto Tamada took home a good result for Kawasaki, the Japanese rider finishing in tenth place.
Max Biaggi: "It's great! What can I say! When I crossed the start-finish I was so happy to be winning this race and I had so many flashbacks of Brno, I can feel that it is one of my favourite circuits. Of course I don't want to take anything away from Spies and Fabrizio, they were both very fast, but I remember Barry Sheene used to say 'To finish first, first you have to finish' and this is a part of the deal. I put my head down and did not make any mistake, so a big thanks to all my crew, Aprilia and in particular Gigi Dall'Igna, the 'papa' of our bike!."
Carlos Checa: "It's a good result for the team to get two riders on the podium and I think we did a very good job. At a certain point I thought maybe I could catch Max, but in the end I had to preserve my tyres as the right side in particular was not so good, and I could see there was no way. I settled for second as I could see that Johnny was 4 seconds behind."
Jonathan Rea: "Well, in Superpole we had to ride through the problems and get a good result and we did the same here in the race, so I feel quite fortunate to get a podium. We didn't quite have the pace of Max , but my team have done a really good job. I really love this place, but I can't understand why I had a slow start to the weekend."
Spies powered into the lead shortly after the start to head towards his eleventh win of the season. It wasn't easy however as the Texan had to keep Biaggi at bay, and the Italian took second at the end. Third went to Fabrizio, who lost contact with the leading pair in the last few laps. Despite his win, Spies was unable to overtake Haga at the top of the table. The Japanese rider ran a heroic second race to finish in sixth place, holding off a trio of Tom Sykes (Yamaha), Byrne and Smrz in the final stages. Just off the podium were the Ten Kate pairing of Jonathan Rea and Carlos Checa, their positions inverted from race 1. Once again Corser was up at the front in the early stages, but this time the Australian finished in tenth.
Ben Spies: "It was a tough race, Fabrizio was there and I had to push and make good lap times. When I saw Max was there, he arrived quite quick and I had to start braking very late and stopping almost in the middle of the corner to get good drive so he couldn't come by me. The first race obviously wasn't so good but we rallied together for the second race. That pass attempt was not the best move in the world, but that's how racing goes sometimes. A big thanks also to the Clinica Mobile guys because I wasn't feeling so good this weekend."
Max Biaggi: "It's a great result, I'm quite pleased, it's not a victory but we proved that we have a lot of muscle and could fight with Fabrizio and Spies all the time. I stopped behind Fabrizio for quite a time, while Spies managed to pull away. In the end I passed him and went to catch Spies. I tried to brake very late, but I didn't want to take him out like it was in the first race. We got a good result and it was a very good weekend here for Aprilia."
Michel Fabrizio: "It was really difficult to fight against Aprilia and Yamaha today. The only problem we had was coming out of the turns where I never quite managed to stay behind first Ben and then Max, but we should be happy with this third place and now we must look ahead."
There was a sensational end to the Supersport race as Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha World Supersport) had to retire with a mechanical problem two laps from the flag as he was heading for another dominant victory, thus re-opening the title battle. His closest rival Eugene Laverty (Parkalgar Honda) had been struggling all weekend and could only finish fifth. The win, after the four-way battle for second turned into the fight for first, went to his team-mate Fabien Foret, who returned to the top slot for the first time since last year, the Frenchman thus wiping out all memories of his nasty crash here on this track twelve months ago. In the sprint finish, the runner-up slot went to Anthony West (Stiggy Racing Honda), who managed to get the better of the two increasingly competitive Kawasakis of Joan Lascorz and Katsuaki Fujiwara. South African Sheridan Morais put in a good run for sixth place, ahead of Italian Massimo Roccoli (Intermoto Honda) and Garry Mc Coy (ParkinGo Triumph), while the Hannspree Ten Kate Honda team again had a disappointing day, their two champions Kenan Sofuoglu and Andrew Pitt only finishing ninth and tenth respectively.
The Superstock 1000 FIM Cup round produced a real thriller. After leading for almost the entire race, Maxime Berger (Ten Kate Honda) crashed two turns from the chequered flag, throwing away a certain victory. The man who raised the winners' champagne was Belgium's Xavier Simeon (Ducati Xerox), who took his second win in a row and has now increased his overall points lead to 26 over Claudio Corti (Suzuki Alstare). The Italian could only finish sixth, because of vibration problems on his Suzuki right from the start. Second place went to Spain's Javi Fores (Kawasaki Pedercini), who held off the Czech rider Ondrej Jezek (MS Racing Honda) in the final stages. In fourth place finished Frenchman Sylvain Barrier (Garnier Yamaha) ahead of Daniele Beretta (Ducati Xerox).
The outcome of the Superstock 600 race was decided on the last lap, with a seven-rider sprint to the chequered flag. In the end the win went to Belgium's Vincent Lonbois (MTM Racing Yamaha), who held off points leader Danilo Petrucci (Yamaha Trasimeno). With second place the young Italian confirms his leadership in a hard-fought championship battle that sees five riders separated at the top by 22 points. Third place went to Italian Eddi La Marra (Honda Lorini), with France's Jeremy Guarnoni (MRS Yamaha), Norway's Fredrik Carlsen (VD Heyden Yamaha), Gino Rea (Ten Kate Honda) of Britain and Italy's Marco Bussolotti (Yamaha Trasimeno) making up the top 7.