Troy Corser clinched the 2005 World Superbike championship today under somewhat unusual circumstances -- the Australian took the title after a torrential downpour caused the cancellation of the second race of the Imola round.
Corser, riding an Alstare Corona Extra Suzuki, had lost the first race of the weekend to his archrival Chris Vermeulen in a hard-fought battle, but still led the championship chase by 409 points to 354 before the second race.
Once it became apparent that the rain would not let up, the organizers made the decision to cancel the race, handing the title to Corser, given that there are only 50 points in the offing for a race weekend, thus eliminating even a mathematical chance for Vermeulen.
So Corser took his second title, following up on the 1996 title he won with Suzuki. This year's championship was even more dominant, with eight wins and 18 podium finishes in 21 races -- a model of consistency.
His young countryman, Vermeulen, was the only one to put up a consistent fight this year, having taken his Winston Ten Kate Honda to five victories and 13 podiums during the year.
The season now closes with the planned season finale, at Circuit Magny-Cours, in one week's time.