Portimao: Yamaha Saturday report

Crutchlow conquers the first European Superpole of 2010 at Portimao Yamaha Sterilgarda World Superbike rider Cal Crutchlow set himself apart from the class this afternoon, storming through the Superpole heats to take pole and breaking the Best...

Crutchlow conquers the first European Superpole of 2010 at Portimao

Yamaha Sterilgarda World Superbike rider Cal Crutchlow set himself apart from the class this afternoon, storming through the Superpole heats to take pole and breaking the Best Lap record in the process. Crutchlow unleashed the full potential of the Yamaha R1's power in ideal track conditions, leaving a gap of over four tenths of a second to second placed Aprilia rider Max Biaggi. Team-mate James Toseland had also been progressing well through the sessions with fast consistent speed until an unfortunate high-side on the last corner of the circuit in heat two relegated him to 15th on the grid for tomorrow's two Superbike races. Although bruised Toseland was luckily uninjured in the high speed crash.

The second qualifying session of the race weekend earlier in the day saw both riders focussing on the set up for race day whilst ensuring they remained within the times for the subsequent Superpole sessions. Incredibly the first 14 riders of the session were within 0.7 of a second of each other. Crutchlow's time, just 0.6 off the front man was particularly impressive considering the entire session was run on just one set of tyres.

Cal Crutchlow, Yamaha Sterilgarda World Superbike Team (1st, 1'42.092)

"The Superpole lap wasn't really a surprise to me to be honest, we had a good session beforehand and I knew we could go really well in the qualifying session this morning. We left a lot in reserve, so down in 14th place I wasn't panicking. I knew we had a good pace for the pole session, I only used one qualifying tyre and we only needed one lap to do it. Yamaha's done a fantastic job in the last month, it was hard work but we've got there in the end, all working together. I'm quietly confident we'll do a good job tomorrow as well."

James Toseland, Yamaha Sterilgarda World Superbike Team (15th, 1'49.401)

"What a disappointing end to what has been a great qualifying so far this weekend. The Sterilgarda Yamaha Team have been brilliant in how they've transformed the bike from where we were in Phillip Island and I want to thank them for that. The mistake for me was that I was on the second lap on the qualifier tyre and I was trying to make it work hard on the last turn as if it had been the first lap on it. Unfortunately it was a mistake, I suffered a lack of grip and the consequence is I'm now 15th on the grid."

Massimo Meregalli, Yamaha Sterilgarda World Superbike Team Manager

"first of all I think a big thanks to the guys to have done such a good job since our not so great performance in Australia. I have to say Cal did a fantastic lap, we are confident that we will be in there tomorrow. The pace Cal had in practice was really good so I'm expecting good things. Unfortunately James had a big high-side during the second Superpole session which was unfortunate, but he has a good race pace which will help. For sure it will be harder for him to start from the back but I think he knows how to fight his way through. Let's see what happens tomorrow.

-source: yamaha

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About this article
Series World Superbike
Drivers Max Biaggi , James Toseland , Cal Crutchlow , Phillip Island