HANNspree Ten Kate Honda complete first Phillip Island qualifying A warm and sunny Phillip Island played host to the first qualifying session of the second round of the World Supersport Championship today. The HANNspree Ten Kate Honda riders...
HANNspree Ten Kate Honda complete first Phillip Island qualifying
A warm and sunny Phillip Island played host to the first qualifying session of the second round of the World Supersport Championship today. The HANNspree Ten Kate Honda riders remained in the top four for the majority of the 45-minute session, however the final timesheets showed Kenan Sofuoglu and Sebastien Charpentier in fifth and sixth positions respectively.
In a repeat of events in Qatar last weekend, an oil spill on the track meant that conditions weren't perfect for this afternoon's qualifying. The session was red flagged due to a crash on the main straight, which halted proceedings for some time. The riders rejoined the 4.445km track with only 12 minutes remaining.
After recording the second fastest lap time in morning free practice, Charpentier finished sixth fastest with a final time of 1'35.902 - just 0.736 seconds behind fastest rider Fabien Foret. The Frenchman secured pole position and the race win at Phillip Island in both 2005 and 2006 so he will certainly be looking to improve today's result in the second qualifying session tomorrow afternoon.
Kenan Sofuoglu finished just ahead of his team-mate in fifth position with a best lap of 1'35.868. The incredibly close final timesheet saw the top six riders separated by just over half a second. Competition is tough and pole position in Sunday's race could still belong to anyone.
Ronald ten Kate, Team Manager:
"This has been a bit of a troubled first day for us. We had a very good test here in January so we were hoping to achieve the same times again. The bike has improved since the test but we have had a lot of small problems today that have made our lives very difficult. We will be working on the bike tonight to make sure that these problems are sorted out for tomorrow. These are not the positions we want to be in because we are capable of doing better."
"It was not easy today because we had some problems with the set-up of the bike. We tested here in January and did really well but now the conditions are very different. There was oil on the track again and there were two or three bad crashes. I am hoping that we have good weather tomorrow so that we can work on the set-up of the bike to close the gap to the front"
"I am not happy with this result because we tested at this track in January and we were at least two seconds faster. The track conditions are very different today - they are pretty bad - and we have do adjust the set-up of the bike now to suit current conditions. I think if we can get the set-up correct in tomorrow's free practice we can regain our speed and start recording some laps closer to our testing times."