Rain stops play at Silverstone Wet weather played havoc with the racing at the seventh round of the 2007 World Superbike Championship at Silverstone today, with the second race of the day being cancelled. In spite of this, HANNspree Ten Kate...
Rain stops play at Silverstone
Wet weather played havoc with the racing at the seventh round of the 2007 World Superbike Championship at Silverstone today, with the second race of the day being cancelled. In spite of this, HANNspree Ten Kate Honda's James Toseland maintained his championship lead, while team-mate Roberto Rolfo continued his recent good form with another impressive performance.
Race one took place in treacherously heavy rain that caused nine riders to crash out during the 28-lap contest. Just three laps in, Toseland parted with his CBR1000RR after losing the rear end at Priory corner. Despite spilling all the water from the bike's engine and damaging the right handlebar, the British rider re-joined the race in last place and proceeded to battle his way through the pack. He put up a truly admirable fight to secure an eighth place finish, collecting an invaluable eight points towards his standings tally.
Team-mate Rolfo - who is known for his strength in wet conditions - started the race from thirteenth on the grid and by lap three had already secured fourth position. The Italian rider maintained station for the remainder of the race with an impressive display of skilful wet weather riding. He picked up 13 points to climb to eighth place in the championship standings. Troy Bayliss, Noriyuki Haga and Troy Corser took first, second and third places respectively.
Following careful assessment of the track conditions, it was deemed too dangerous for race two to go ahead. The results of race one therefore determine the current standings, with Toseland in first and Rolfo in eighth position.
Ronald ten Kate:
"The weekend started positively for us but it's ended on quite a low. James came here hoping to get the double, or at least good results for his home crowd. Instead of this he didn't even get to race two races. I am behind the decision that has been made because in this sport, safety must come first and if safety is an issue then we have to stop. James crashed out early in the race, but as he picked up the bike everyone could see that the cooling water had come out and he rode the rest of the race with no coolant in the engine. The engine managed to last until the end, which is a success in itself. James managed to climb up the ladder to eighth place, which is even more admirable because he had a broken handlebar as well.
"Roby was really on it in the first race. He had to come from quite a bit behind but he managed to get to the front. We had made some small changes to his bike for the second race in the hope of getting to the podium, so for him it is even more frustrating. Anyway, he has shown that he is a great wet weather rider. Now we are all looking forward to Misano and hopefully some good weather!"
"I made a mistake in race one, but I was determined to re-mount the bike and claim as many points as possible. My handlebar was loose and I lost all the water from the engine because the water pipe came off. It was tough going but in the end I got eight crucial points and I still have the lead. Of course I am disappointed about race two - I am a racer and I was ready to race and get back the points lost in race one. However, I know that safety has to come first and I respect the decision of the organisers."
"I am very happy about the results of race one because I found a very good feeling on the bike. Unfortunately I lost a lot of time in the last ten laps and couldn't quite catch the front runners to fight for the podium. Of course I am disappointed about the second race but this has happened and there is nothing we can do. In any case, it was not a bad result. I think we have done well - I have improved a lot on a difficult track so thanks to the team for that. I want to go to Misano and continue the standard of riding I found in Monza."