Crutchlow charges through to a hard fought Imola podium finish The second race of the Imola World Superbike round today saw Yamaha Sterilgarda rider Cal Crutchlow deliver an inspired ride. Coming from a bad start, dropping to 13th off the line,...
Crutchlow charges through to a hard fought Imola podium finish
The second race of the Imola World Superbike round today saw Yamaha Sterilgarda rider Cal Crutchlow deliver an inspired ride. Coming from a bad start, dropping to 13th off the line, Crutchlow put the hammer down and chased down the lead pack. An engine failure by Leon Haslam scattered the following riders. Undeterred he kept on pushing, overtaking Max Biaggi with six laps left to go for fourth place. Lap 18 saw him swiftly dispatch Tom Sykes at the last chicane before the start finish line for third place which he then held to the line to claim his podium, finishing just 3.9 seconds off the leader. Team mate James Toseland started the second race well, passing eight riders in the first few laps, but unfortunately lost the front end whilst pushing hard in the third lap and was unable to rejoin.
Race one earlier in the day saw Toseland shoot off the line and begin an all out assault on the front pack. Starting from 17th on the grid, Toseland had made up ten places by the third lap to run in seventh. By lap 7 he had made it to sixth when a technical failure coming out of the Curva Acque Minerali ended his race. Team mate Cal Crutchlow dropped slightly to 14th off the start line from his 12th position on the grid but fought back to run just behind his team mate in seventh position by lap seven. Coming into lap 12 Crutchlow had climbed further and took Smrz for fifth going into the first corner. Unfortunately he ran wide onto the gravel the following lap, dropping to tenth where he held on, fighting off championship leader Biaggi to keep his position at the finish line.
As the Yamaha riders head to Magny Cours next in France for the 13th and final round of the 2010 World Superbike Championship they do so with Crutchlow sitting in fifth place in the standings on 239 points, 35 behind Carlos Checa in fourth. Team mate James Toseland sits two places back in seventh with 187 points, 51 points behind Noriyuki Haga in sixth.
Cal Crutchlow, Yamaha Sterilgarda World Superbike Team (10th, 3rd)
"I'm happy with today in the end. I'm disappointed with the first race, I think I had podium pace and was catching up to the guys in front but made an error which dropped me back. The second race was good, I had a bad start then Noriyuki Haga and Carlos Checa and I all had to come from the back which made it interesting. Big thanks to Yamaha who put together a great bike this weekend for me, we were really strong and put in some good laps towards the end of the races and I think we showed what we are capable of."
James Toseland, Yamaha Sterilgarda World Superbike Team (DNF,DNF)
"After the warm up this morning I felt really confident. The Yamaha team worked really hard overnight last night and the bike I had today felt really good. Unfortunately we had a technical issue in race one when I felt I could have challenged for the podium. Once again in race two I fought hard in the early stages and had the pace to go for the podium. It just seems that luck isn't with me at the moment but I'm going to try and win a race in Magny Cours as it's a place that's always bought me luck."
Massimo Meregalli, Yamaha Sterilgarda World Superbike Team Manager
"A really unusual race weekend, the wet Superpole yesterday meant a really back to front grid for today's two races. Fortunately we got a well earned podium with Cal in race two. He rode a fantastic second race and pushed very hard. He didn't have a great start but was catching the leaders when Haslam's technical failure caused some disruption which gave him an opportunity to move up. He fought on for the podium and I think it would have been impossible for him to do better. We leave Imola with mixed emotions, looking to improve our performance next week in Magny Cours."