WSBK Italy (1): Rea wins Imola sprint
Interrupted during the 10th lap, the first round of Superbike at Imola was contested over six short laps. Well off to a good start, Sykes made a small mistake that Rea took full advantage of. Giugliano completes the podium. First Superbike race Tom Sykes took off very quickly from the grid but Giugliano retained the advantage in the first corner…
Interrupted during the 10th lap, the first round of Superbike at Imola was contested over six short laps. Having started off well, Sykes made a small mistake that Rea took full advantage of. Giugliano completes the podium.
First Superbike race
Tom Sykes took off very quickly from the grid but Giugliano retained the advantage at the first corner and Rea infiltrated between them. Chaz Davies, Leon Haslam, Leandro Mercado, Jordi Torres, Ayrton Badovini, David Salom and Sylvain Guintoli make up the Top 10.
Davide leaves like a fury and leads the peloton by almost a second in the middle of the first lap! At the first crossing of the finish line, the Ducati n ° 34 is nine tenths of a second ahead of the two official Kawasaki and the second factory Ducati. Leon Haslam is two seconds behind the leader. Mercado and Torres struggle to hang on to No.91.
Giugliano loses half of his lead in the second loop. Rea sets the fastest time in the race but is still followed by Sykes and Davies. Haslam moved away from Torres who overtook Mercado in the 3rd lap. Salom, Badovini and Guintoli still complete the Top 10. De Puniet and Ponsson occupy 17th and 18th places.
The Italian n ° 34 completed the 3rd lap in the lead but the three Britons got back on his feet … Chaz Davies lost his way slightly in the final "Variante Bassa" chicane and was a big half a second behind .. Rea, overtaken by Sykes in the first sequence of the 4th round !
Torres leaves the track in the second left of the "Traguardo" track and joins the race in a distant 18th place, just behind our dear Christophe Ponsson! Haslam is seven seconds behind the leaders but must watch Mercado, still in his wheel…
Davies dives his Ducati n ° 7 under Rea’s n ° 65 Kawasaki at the start of the 6th lap but goes off the track a few bends later … It seems that the engine of his Panigale has cut dead in the middle of the bend and forced the unhappy Welshman abandoned! Randy de Puniet is also out of the race.
In front, Sykes is more and more pressing on Giugliano. The former world champion is so comfortable at the controls of his ZX-10R that he overtakes the Panigale on the outside in the rapid "Tamburello" curve! In the following lap, Jonathan Rea breaks his track record and lodges in the aspiration of Ducati n ° 34.
The 9th lap marks the end of Torres’ race … and the start of Rea’s charge: the northern Irishman easily overtakes Giugliano and quickly rejoins his teammate. Giugliano loses contact with the two leaders. Haslam is 10 seconds from Sykes, Mercado 12.
The red flag is waved while there are nine laps to go: Davide Salom fell into the left double Rivazza and was evacuated on a stretcher. The drivers return to the pit and are quickly warned that the race will restart for six short laps.
The order on the grid corresponds to the order of passage on the finish line during the last complete lap (9th): Sykes will therefore start in front of Giugliano, Rea, Haslam, Mercado, Badovini, Van den Mark, Guintoli, Camier, Baiocco, Fabrizio, Ramos, Lowes, Barragan, Ponsson, Toth and Rizmayer.
Second departure: Ducati n ° 34 starts in a long rear wheel and loses ground on the two official Kawasaki. Haslam tries to take advantage of it and pass Giugliano in "Traguardo" but the Italian stays ahead! Guintoli is in 5th position ahead of Badovini, Mercado, Baiocco, Camier, Ramos, etc..
Sykes leads the way just in front of his teammate Rea. Giugliano is a few lengths away. Haslam is further still and sees the podium move away irresistibly. Guintoli must defend his 5th place against Badovini in his S1000RR of the BMW Italia team.
The English Ninja n ° 66 is slightly lost at the exit of "Acqua Minerali" and allows his teammate n ° 65 to pass him under acceleration. Jonathan Rea completed the 3rd lap in the lead after exploding the track record! But Tom does not give up and continues to attack as in qualifying … and like Jonathan and Davide who surround him !
Sykes got back on Rea in the 4th lap and moved away from Giugliano. Haslam is three seconds from Rea, 1.5 seconds from the No.34 Ducati. Four big seconds behind the n ° 91 Aprilia are still Guintoli and Badovini. Mercado, Baiocco, VDM and Fabrizio complete the Top 10.
The last lap is launched when Sykes has just turned even faster than Rea! The n ° 66 attacks to the maximum: his ZX-10R rears up under acceleration, slips under braking, moves in each curve … In front, the n ° 65 spares a little more his Ninja and ends up winning . Behind the two Kawa ‘Boys but "in front" of his audience, Davide Giugliano celebrates his return to competition with a podium.
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