FIRST QUALIFYING PRACTICE Troy Bayliss (Ducati Xerox) set the quickest time on the opening day of Superbike qualifying at Assen. The Australian, who hurt his back in a high-speed bicycle crash on Wednesday, was quickest in both the morning's...
FIRST QUALIFYING PRACTICE
Troy Bayliss (Ducati Xerox) set the quickest time on the opening day of Superbike qualifying at Assen. The Australian, who hurt his back in a high-speed bicycle crash on Wednesday, was quickest in both the morning's free practice session and in Q1, when he set a time of 1'39.677, the only rider under the 1'40 mark but one second off the lap record. Two Japanese riders were next up in second and third, Noriyuki Haga (Yamaha Motor Italia WSB) and Yukio Kagayama (Suzuki Alstare), Haga writing off his number 1 Yamaha bike when he lost the front at Stekkenwal.
Jakub Smrz (Guandalini Ducati) was an early pace-setter, the Czech Republic rider heading the field until the final stages and eventually finishing fourth overall ahead of Fonsi Nieto (Suzuki Alstare). Kawasaki PSG-1 Corse showed some progress today, Makoto Tamada setting sixth quickest time, but Regis Laconi crashed out on the second ZX-10R.
Max Neukirchner was eighth for Suzuki Alstare, while Max Biaggi (Sterilgarda Go Eleven Ducati) focused mainly on race set-up, setting eleventh quickest time. Carlos Checa (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda) was a couple of places down the timesheets in thirteenth position.
The session was red-flagged with five minutes remaining when Dutch wild-card rider Arie Vos wrote off his Ducati 1098, the bike splitting into two pieces and covering the track with debris. The last few minutes after the re-start saw two more crashes involving Valencia winner Lorenzo Lanzi (RG Ducati) and Smrz.
Broc Parkes (Yamaha World Supersport) seemed to show no ill-effects from his high-speed crash in free practice as he powered to the quickest time in a hard-fought qualifying session. The Australian, riding with a bruised right hand, set a time of 1'41.416 to top the timesheets. Such was the pace that the next ten riders were all within one second, and they were headed by Gianluca Nannelli (Hannspree Honda Althea) and Jonathan Rea (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda), who had been quickest in the morning session. Another British rider Craig Jones (Parkalgar Racing Honda) was next up, followed by Angel Rodriguez (Yamaha Spain), substitute for David De Gea. Points leader Joan Lascorz (Glaner Motocard.com Honda) and Fabien Foret (Yamaha World Supersport), both of whom had been session leaders early on, were in seventh and ninth respectively.
Maxime Berger (Hannspree IDS Ten Kate Honda) was the early pacesetter in the opening Superstock 1000 session with a time of 1'42.592, the French rider heading a trio of determined Italians, Claudio Corti (Yamaha Motor Italia Junior Team), Michele Pirro (Yamaha Lorenzini by Leoni) and Davide Giugliano (Cruciani Suzuki). Valencia race winner Brendan Roberts and his team-mate Domenico Colucci struggled today, the Australian hampered by an electrical problem in sixteenth place and his Ducati Xerox Junior team-mate even further down the field. The new KTM RC8 machine of Rene Maehr was also in difficulty on the fast Dutch track.
Two red flags marked Superstock 600 as a couple of riders crashed out, leaving their machines in the middle of the track. The session was dominated by British riders, with three in the top four. Ex-250 GP man Dan Linfoot was quickest with a time of 1'45.694 on his Beowulf Yamaha R6 ahead of Sam Lowes on his Azione Corse Honda CBR600, while Valencia winner Loris Baz was third for Yamaha Junior Team ahead of Gino Rea on a second Beowulf machine.