Oschersleben: Michelin race report

Hodgson on record Neil Hodgson's (Ducati Fila-Michelin) first race win in Germany means the world championship leader has equalled the record of nine wins in a row set by Colin Edwards (Castrol Honda-Michelin) last year. Hodgson was second...

Hodgson on record

Neil Hodgson's (Ducati Fila-Michelin) first race win in Germany means the world championship leader has equalled the record of nine wins in a row set by Colin Edwards (Castrol Honda-Michelin) last year. Hodgson was second behind James Toseland (HM Plant Du cati) in race two.

Race one

Chris Walker (HM Plant Ducati) led Pierfrancesco Chili (PSG-1 Ducati), Ruben Xaus (Ducati Fila-Michelin), Neil Hodgson and Regis Laconi (Ducati) at the start of the first race. Troy Corser (Foggy Petronas Racing-Michelin) was tenth. Gregorio Lavilla (Alsta re Suzuki) crashed out of the race. On lap two, Chili took the lead from Walker and Hodgson moved into third ahead of Xaus. One lap later Hodgson was up in second and team-mate Xaus also went by Walker a little later. Hodgson took the lead on lap nine and started pulling away from the pack, with Chili in close pursuit. Xaus crashed and so did James Haydon (Foggy Petronas Racing-Michelin) a few laps later. Hodgson and Chili fought hard for the next twenty laps and the English rider crossed the finish line on ly 0.5 seconds ahead. Superb third place for James Toseland (HM Plant Ducati), who started the race last. Regis Laconi was fourth and Troy Corser twelth.

Race two

James Haydon was unable to race after his first race crash but the first lap was still dominated by English riders with Toseland ahead of Hodgson and Walker. Xaus, Laconi and Chili weren't far behind the leading trio. Troy Corser was 14th at the end of the first lap. At half distance Toseland and Hodsgon had pulled away from a group of four riders - Walker, Chili, Xaus and Laconi. Three quarters of the way into the race, on lap 21, Toseland had a 2.4 second lead on Hodgson with Walker 8.7 seconds behind and Laconi and Xaus both 14 seconds from the race leader. 22 year old Toseland took a brilliant win, a huge 7.4 seconds ahead of Hodgson. Walker was 15 second behind, Laconi 19 and Xaus 24. Troy Corser finished 14th.

"I can't believe it, " said an ecstatic Toseland after the race. "I'm really pleased to have got the win and beating Neil makes the victory even more valuable." Hodgson was the first to congratulate his ex team-mate. "I have to take my hat off to James," he said. "I have no excuses. He beat me fair and square." Foggy Petronas team owner Carl Fogarty wasn't so upbeat about his team's German week-end. "The results on track are certainly no reflection of the hard work put in by my whole team," he commented. "It's just a tough time, not just for the riders and the te am, but for me as well."

Since the start of the world Superbike championship in 1988, Michelin riders have won 257 races out of 373 and taken 11 out of 15 world titles. Michelin won 25 races out of 26 in 2002 and 9 out of 10 races this year.

-michelin-

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About this article
Series World Superbike
Drivers Colin Edwards , Neil Hodgson , Gregorio Lavilla , Ruben Xaus , Chris Walker , James Toseland , Troy Corser , James Haydon , Carl Fogarty , Laconi Régis