ASBK 2018 – Round Seven – Phillip Island
Sunday AM Report
Superbike Masters Race Two
The first act on the ASBK dance card on this final morning of ASBK 2018 was the Superbike Masters category. A new historic category incorporating a mix of Period Six and Period Five Unlimited and F1 machines from between 1980 and 1990.
Aaron Morris dominated the opening Superbike Masters five-lap race on Saturday and it was a similar plot line on Sunday morning. Adrian DiGiandomenico getting the holeshot and leading the race early on before Aaron Morris wound up his FZR1000, blasted past and left the young Victorian in his wake.
Today though DiGiandomenico made Morris work much harder for it, taking defensive lines, backing it in to turns, and managing to keep Morris at bay until the start of lap three. Once ahead though Morris pulled away to a clear win from DiGiandomenico while Jason Cullen rounded out the podium.
Superbike Masters Race Two Results
Kawasaki Supersport Race One
2018 Australian Supersport Champion Cru Halliday got off the line well but a four-wide bar banging fight took place as they streamed towards turn one and it nearly ended in disaster as Halliday was almost knocked clean off his machine. Both feet were dragging behind the bike and most of his body was also off the YZF-R6 for a period of time, heart in mouth stuff for onlookers, let alone Halliday. It was remarkable that nobody ended up in the kitty litter. That melee though left Halliday with plenty of work to do as he had been shuffled back to 13th place in the struggle to get back onboard his machine.
At the front it was Max Croker from Tom Toparis and Damon Rees. Toparis then went through to the lead at turn four on the second lap as Halliday moved up to ninth.
Turn four was also the point of the circuit of the next lead change as Max Croker got the better of Toparis. The two were then side-by-side heading to turn one on the next lap but Croker held his nerve to sweep across the front of the Kawasaki and maintain his lead. Croker backed the Suzuki GSX-R in deep at turn four to hold Toparis at bay again.
The battle continued again on the next lap as Croker and Toparis swapped positions at turn one, turn two and then again at turn three. Large black lines appearing out the back of the Cube Racing Kawasaki of Toparis but it was Croker that held sway around the back of the circuit.
Toparis took the lead again at half race distance just as the top five closed up markedly. Halliday had joined the party at the back of that top five which consisted of Toparis, Croker, Callum Spriggs and Damon Rees.
Halliday then picked off Damon Rees with ease before dispensing with Spriggs in similar fashion.
Things then got too heated up front! Croker getting untidy under brakes at turn four, trying to avoid Toparis but clipping the back of the Kawasaki, which shot the Goulburn youngster over the the highside as Croker went up the exit road.
With those two out of podium contention Halliday was left to his own devices up front. Despite some late determined efforts Callum Spriggs did not quite have the speed to run with Halliday but still banked a highly creditable second while Damon Rees rounded out the podium.
Kawasaki Supersport Race One Results
YMI Superbike Race One
Pole-sitter Wayne Maxwell backed up his record breaking 1m32.096 pole position on Saturday with a 1m32.202 during warm-up on Sunday morning. Josh Waters was also in the 1m32s again during warm-up while newly crowned 2018 ASBK Superbike Champion Troy Herfoss and his Penrite Honda squad must have found something overnight as they dipped into the 1m32s for the first time this race weekend. Likewise, Daniel Falzon and Glenn Allerton had found exta speed overnight to also start clocking 1m32s this morning. Troy Bayliss was not quite so happy though, his comments on the Ducati when returning to the pits could be described as not too complimentary, what ever the DesmoSport Ducati squad was trying this morning, it didn’t work.
However, warm-up was undertaken at 0945 in the morning with a track temperature of 25-degrees, while by the time they gridded up for their first 12-lap battle of the weekend the surface temperature had risen to 33-degrees as the clock approached 1130.
Maxwell seemed to bog down a little off the line but there was no such problems for Josh Waters, the Suzuki shooting towards turn one with a clear advantage over his pursuers and he quickly capitalised on that clear air to stretch a few bike lengths over Maxwell throughout the first 12 turns of the opening lap, the gap at the stripe just under half-a-second. Bryan Staring was equidistant in third place but then seemed to strike some sort of bike problem as he entered turn one for the second time, the Kawasaki then slipping down the field before the Western Australian eventually pulled out of the race.
Inheriting that third place was Troy Bayliss and the DesmoSport Ducati man had a significant buffer over fourth placed Daniel Falzon as the South Australian did battle with Glenn Allerton and Troy Herfoss. Bayliss had lowered the race lap record on lap two with a 1m32.194 and was starting to close on Maxwell and Waters.
That battle over fourth place had been shaken up as Troy Herfoss moved through to head that contingent. With a five-second gap to the race leaders though Herfoss, Falzon and Allerton looked out of podium contention.
Nothing separated the leading trio of Waters, Maxwell and Bayliss as the race broached the halfway mark. Maxwell took the lead for the first time early on lap seven. Bayliss had been looking quite smooth but on that lap the Ducati did start to look a little ragged, Troy’s foot actually coming off the peg as the DesmoSport machine tied itself in knots out of turn two.
Early on lap nine though it was the turn of Troy Bayliss to lead the race. He held on through the next few turns and also kept them out at turn four despite running in a little wide.
Further back in the field Herfoss had drifted back to ninth and Daniel Falzon was now holding sway at the front of that second contingent as they tussled over fourth place.
Bayliss was still leading as they started lap ten, the Ducati seeming to require TB to take wide entries to the corners and was looking, it must be said, a little unwieldy.
The trio were virtually three-wide at turn one with two laps to go but it was the Ducati that emerged still out front. Maxwell’s front tyre touched the rear of Bayliss at turn four but both riders remained on their machines, it cost Maxwell a little though as Waters moved back through to second place.
As they wound up through turns 11 and 12 for the penultimate time, again the Ducati remarkably wide but TB somehow gathered it up to maintain sway at the front of the field.
Last lap and it was TB from Josh Waters and Maxwell. Josh Waters goes to the inside at turn four to take the lead on the final lap, the order remained the same through Siberia and the Hayshed. Maxwell started challenging Bayliss through Lukey Heights and then slipped up the inside for second place at MG Hairpin. Waters leads on to the main straight and takes the race win from Maxwell while Bayliss has to settle for third in what was a brilliant opening Superbike race here at Phillip Island.
Glenn Allerton took fourth in a great return from significant injury, 10-seconds behind the podium men but in front of Daniel Falzon, Troy Herfoss and Ted Collins.
On the podium Bayliss was quite enthused, remarking that it was the most fun he had all year and surprisingly, also stating that he liked the way the bike was behaving and had been having a good time.
Maxwell was similarly quite happy with second place, a position he also holds on to the in the championship points standings by 7.5-points over Waters, while Bayliss is also not out of the first for #2 overall this season.
Josh Waters was relieved to finally get a win on the board for the first time this season. The monkey finally off the back of the Mildura based 31-year-old.
YMI Superbike Race One Results