Phillip Island: Ducati Saturday qualifying report

Laconi (Ducati Fila) Powers To Pole ...

Laconi (Ducati Fila) Powers To Pole #2 of The Year in Australia

Phillip Island (Australia), Saturday 27 March: Regis Laconi (Ducati Fila) took his second pole position of the year in a superb Ducati-Honda battle at Phillip Island as he out-gunned his Ten Kate rival Chris Vermeulen by almost one second. The young Australian was holding the pole right until the very end of the one-lap dash with 1'34.398 but Laconi put in an incredible time of 1'33.427 to clinch the pole.

"For me the championship starts in Phillip Island! After my double zero in Valencia I am so happy to be on pole here in Australia," declared Laconi. "I like this track , we have worked so well with the team to find good settings on the bike and try to be fast for the race...and we succeeded!"

"Before I wasn't so quick in this one-lap grid qualifying session, but this year it looks like I am super-fast in Superpole!" he added. "For sure we lost a bit of grip in the afternoon when it got warmer, but it was less windy. We worked on the tyres and the settings but made no big changes from the morning, and the bike is OK for the race."

James Toseland had a positive day on the second Ducati Fila 999, cancelling out his tenth-place performance yesterday to move up to sixth overall in qualifying, a position he then held in Superpole, and the 23-year-old will start tomorrow's two races from the second row of the grid.

"It wasn't a bad lap really in Superpole until the last corner but then there was a massive gust of wind that sent me wide and lost me a couple of tenths of a second. Without that I would have been on the front row for sure," declared Toseland. " It's been a difficult weekend up to now anyway and it could have been a lot worse so I'm happy with the way things have turned out.

"It's not too bad starting on the second row because things are different in the race and with the tyres after half race distance it's just a question of hanging in there. I'm happy with my set-up now, because after yesterday's problems we just went back to what we had here in January to change the main suspension geometry to what we had at the tests and the bike feels a lot more comfortable now," he concluded.

STARTING-GRID: 1. Laconi (Ducati Fila) 1'33.427; 2. Vermeulen (Honda) 1'34.398; 3. Martin (DFX Ducati) 1'34.600; 4. Haslam (Renegade Ducati) 1'34.838; 5. Haga (Renegade Ducati) 1'35.018; 6. Toseland (Ducati Fila) 1'35.034; 7. Corser (Petronas) 1'35.179; 8. McCoy (Xerox Ducati) 1'35.190; etc.

TV COVERAGE: Eurosport (pan-European) - Sunday 28 March, 0400 Race 1 (live), 0730 Race 2 (live). La 7 (Italy), Saturday 27 March, 1100 Superpole (delayed); Sunday 28 March, 1400 Race 1 (delayed), 1725 Race 2 (delayed).

Supersport:

Row 3 Start For Lanzi (Ducati Breil) at Phillip Island

Phillip Island (Australia), Saturday 27 March: Lorenzo Lanzi (Ducati Breil) will start tomorrow's second round of the World Supersport Championship from row 3 of the grid after qualifying in tenth position.

22-year-old Lanzi, from Cesena, Italy, was unable to improve on the time of 1'37.300 he set in yesterday's opening session, and slipped down from sixth to tenth as the Supersport battle heated up at the front.

But the youngster, who powered his way to a unexpected fourth place finish on his and the 749R's debut at Valencia one month ago, is convinced he can pull off another positive result in tomorrow's 21-lap race.

"I hoped for a better position but unfortunately it wasn't to be," he declared. "We made a series of modifications this morning but we realised it wasn't the right way to go so we switched back to yesterday's settings."

"We then had a few minor problems in the afternoon and it was only in the last couple of laps that we were able to fit a tyre that was the same as yesterday's and we immediately improved by one second, but by then it was too late."

"I'm disappointed about this because I lost out on the second row. It's still one row better than Valencia, so I feel sure I can get a decent start and get another good result."

STARTING-GRID: 1. Muggeridge (Honda) 1'35.994; 2. Curtain (Yamaha) 1'36.164; 3. Parkes (Honda) 1'36.384 ; 4. Brookes (Honda) 1'36.425; 5. Foret (Yamaha) 1'36.533; 6. Charpentier (Honda) 1'36.555; 7. VD Goorbergh (Yamaha) 1'36.838 ; 8. Fujiwara (Suzuki) 1'36.943; 9. Kellner (Yamaha) 1'37.278; 10. Lanzi (Ducati Breil) 1'37.300; etc.

TV COVERAGE: Eurosport (pan-European) - Sunday 28 March, 0500 Race (live). La 7 (Italy), Sunday 28 March, 1700 Race (delayed).

-www.ducati.com

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