Chaz Davies finally gets one over Jonathan Rea with Race Two victory at Aragon
Fantastic ride by Chaz Davies from tenth on the grid sees Welshman overcome Jonathan Rea in Sunday’s race two at Aragon, with Marco Melandri third. Saturday’s race one saw the Rea train charging ahead, with his fifth straight win of season 2017.
World Superbike 2017 – Round Three – Aragon – Superbike Race Two Report
In sunny but windy conditions at MotorLand Aragon – went down to the last lap, with Davies making amends for his Race 1 crash as he got the better of World Champion Rea over the last two corners.
The pair dueled for the lead in the final stages, with Davies ultimately crossing the line half a second ahead of Rea, to end the Northern Irishman’s five race winning streak. Melandri continued his solid comeback season in third place, around 2.5s back on his victorious teammate.
Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) finished in fourth place, the former World Champion suffering from sickness this weekend in Spain. Sykes finished eight down on the podium positions but got the better of Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) on the final lap.
Dutchman Van der Mark equaled his best result of the season so far in fifth. There was frustration for his Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team colleague Alex Lowes on lap 11, as a mistake saw him run off track and drop out of podium contention as he resumed way down the field, having been in fourth before his off-track excursion.
Lowes had started Race 2 at the front of the grid and he had held the lead for several laps. The Englishman eventually finished 13th.
Xavi Fores (BARNI Racing Team) recovered from the drama of his Saturday DNF, which saw his race end with his Ducati in flames, finishing Sunday’s contest as the top Spanish rider in sixth – just under two seconds ahead of compatriot Jordi Torres (Althea BMW Racing Team).
Leandro Mercado (IODARacing), Eugene Laverty (Milwaukee Aprilia) and Leon Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) completed the top ten.
Nicky Hayden (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team) suffered a DNF due to a technical problem, whilst Alex De Angelis (Pedercini Racing SC-Project) crashed out at the end of lap 15.
The WorldSBK grid will be back in action at the Acerbis Dutch Round at Assen from 28-30 April.
Chaz Davies – P1
“The whole weekend has been difficult, from start to finish, so it was really important to cap it with a win, especially after yesterday’s disappointment. We were confident our bike would be fast at Aragon, but it wasn’t easy at all out there today and our main rivals seem relatively comfortable so we know there’s still work to do in many areas. Today we suffered a bit with grip early on. Also, the wind was really strong.
“It kept pushing me away from corners and in the last lap I got caught by a gust going into turn 5 and I missed a backshift, going a bit wide, but we still managed to finish in front. We’re competitive but it’s still not enough, so we need to keep working to improve. Tomorrow’s test will be very important for us but, for now, we’re going to enjoy this victory.”
Jonathan Rea – P2
“I got to the front quite early but I could not make a break because it was so windy on the straight that the group stayed together. When Chaz came past he had a little bit more pace and I upped my own pace to try and go with him. He made a few mistakes but none that meant I could really go through clean on him and make it stick. On the last lap I just fought – fought for a win. I tried in a few places but it did not work out in the end.
“We can’t complain too much because on one side of the circuit we were really strong. Congratulations to Chaz because to come back from a big crash yesterday and win today was really impressive. I am really happy with the way I rode today and I got 45 points this weekend, even though I was not feeling my best. But the bike was working really well so I am looking forward to rolling to Assen now.”
Marco Melandri – P3
“Today our bike was more competitive than in Race 1 and we were in contention for the win almost until the very end. I wanted to try to pull away with about 8 laps to go, but unfortunately I almost crashed a couple of times and after that it would have been difficult to pass Rea and Davies, so in the end I couldn’t ask for more. Each race I learn something new and I’m getting acquainted with the head-to-head battles, but we lacked the necessary grip to push with the front. Anyway, we’re happy with our performance. We’re constantly fighting for podiums and we’re not far from winning. We just need to improve the setup to be a bit more consistent throughout the race, and tomorrow’s tests will be very important to this end.”
Stefano Cecconi, Aruba S.p.A CEO and Team Principal
“We came to Aragon with great expectations but we struggled more than what we expected. At any rate, both Chaz and Marco showed great competitiveness and put on a show. We have good reasons to believe this is but the first win of the year, and we’ll keep working hard from tomorrow’s tests onward to allow our riders to be protagonists also in Assen. The season is still long.”
Tom Sykes – P4
“I thought I would feel better today but I am worse in my physical condition than yesterday because I have not eaten anything. We got close to the front but I am just not comfortable on the bike in windy conditions. It looks like we are sensitive on the front set-up anyway, but the wind was terrible today! And for whatever reason I am not able to keep a nice constant load on the front, which is something to consider for testing tomorrow. I just wasn’t able to keep the pace of the leaders here. We finished third and fourth on a tough weekend, and this has been the first time in a long time I have been sick on a race weekend. I have not been working at full capacity and, on the bike, you can feel how your mind does not even run at the same speed as normal. It has been a very surreal and strange feeling this weekend. I gave everything I had but I am obviously not running at full capacity.”
Michael van der Mark – P5
“I’m really happy, we had a good start in second behind Alex, then Johnny Rea passed me and then Marco Melandri passed me on the straight. I was a little bit slower than the guys in front of me but I could hold on to them so I was happy with that. For sure we’ve made another step forward; that is really good. In the end I struggled with the front tyre, we were on the softer front option and I think today with the wind it made it worse. I’m happy finishing fifth, and it was good to fight in the front group. I want to thank the team for all their hard work. Everybody is working really very hard and we can see the potential is developing well. We are making progress and I’m happy.”
Alex Lowes – P13
“I’m annoyed but it’s my first small mistake in a race this year. It wasn’t all my fault, I haven’t been 100% happy with the shifting on the bike and just at that point I didn’t get the shift quite right and missed the gear. I ran off and that was it, 20 seconds gone right there to get back in to the race. The team have done a fantastic job, my bike was great and I would have liked to be on the podium so overall I’ve got to be happy with the potential. When I got back on track my pace was similar to Marco Melandri’s but I was a long way behind. I’m upset that we had an opportunity to fight for the podium and we didn’t take it. I feel good and I really feel we have made a good step forward on the bike. I need to improve in the first few laps but my race pace the second half of the race is good and I fully believe I could have been battling with the guys for the podium today. That’s my goal for Assen, keep consistent, keep working hard and keep having fun.”
Paul Denning – Yamaha Team Manager
“Michael rode a really strong race today from the front row, putting the R1 in the podium fight. Unfortunately, due to a combination of front tyre choice and the extremely cold and strong wind, the tyre degradation compared to race one was considerably worse and we didn’t have anything left to fight with in the last five or six laps. Two fifth places is a strong and positive result for Michael. His understanding and riding style is moving forward to match the R1’s characteristics, so we move on to his home track of Assen with positive aspirations! A disappointing race two result today for Alex, yet on reflection there are still many positives for the Pata Yamaha World Superbike project and Alex to take away. He looked very comfortable in fourth position, hadn’t been dropped by the podium fight and was right on Melandri’s rear wheel when he suffered a small problem that caused him to run off the track. Nonetheless, I’m sure on reflection Alex will balance his disappointment with the fact that we were competitive and potentially in the fight for the podium, at a track we didn’t perform well at in 2016. Its another signal that we and the R1 have moved forward and we will do our best to take the next step.”
Stefan Bradl – P12
“This was not the result we were expecting, obviously. We tried a different setting from yesterday because we wanted to get a better turn in with the bike, and in the warm up it felt good. We decided to keep it, because we need to make changes and see how the bike reacts, but unfortunately it didn’t help us during the race. I was overriding the front tyre a bit, which left me with very little grip for the final laps when I was fighting with Ramos and Camier. We made a poor choice, but it was the first time that we made some real adjustment to the chassis as before we were mainly concentrating on the electronics and the engine. We definitely have a couple of things to try tomorrow during the test.”
Nicky Hayden – DNF
“We adjusted the bike a little bit this morning to try and increase the turning and help the changes of direction and the bike felt better. I had a good start and picked up some positions during the first lap. I got up to eighth at one point but as early as the second lap I was having some issues with the clutch: it got worse every lap, up to the point when there was no way I could finish the race, so I had to come back to the pits. Obviously we’re disappointed; things aren’t going our way at the moment but there is a test tomorrow so let’s see if we can make some progress.”
Neither of the Honda riders feature in the top ten of the championship standings, with Hayden 11th on 27-points from six race starts and Bradl on 19-points.
Pieter Breddels – Red Bull Honda Superbike Team Manager
“This morning during warm up we tried new geometry on the front of Stefan’s bike and it looked like we made a step forward as he was able to put together a decent amount of competitive lap times. For the race distance, unfortunately, these settings proved to be too aggressive for the front tyre which wore out quicker than expected. It’s a shame, because Stefan rode a great race and could have stayed in contention for a much better result. Nicky had a good start and was looking strong in the first few laps, but then had a problem with the clutch and he could not continue. It’s a shame because we could have done a bit better today. We now have eight hours of official testing ahead and we’ll make the most of them.”
WorldSBK Race 2 results
1) C. Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati)
2) J. Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team)
3) M. Melandri (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati)
4) T. Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team)
5) M. Van Der Mark (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team)
6) X. Forés (BARNI Racing Team)
7) J. Torres (Althea BMW Racing Team)
8) L. Mercado (IODARacing)
9) E. Laverty (Milwaukee Aprilia)
10) L. Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse)
11) R. Ramos (Team Kawasaki GoEleven)
12) S. Bradl (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team)
13) A. Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team)
14) R. Krummenacher (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing)
15) J. Simon (Milwaukee Aprilia)
16) M. Reiterberger (Althea BMW Racing Team)
17) A. Badovini (Grillini Racing Team)
RT) A. De Angelis (Pedercini Racing SC-Project)
RT) N.Hayden (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team)
RT) R. Russo (Guandalini Racing)
Championship point score after three rounds
- Rea 145
- Davies 95
- Sykes 91
- Melandri 81
- Lowes 65
- Van der Mark 49
- Torres 48
- Fores 44
- Camier 38
- Laverty 30
WorldSSP: Superb victory for Mahias in dramatic Aragon race
Lucas Mahias (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team) was the victor in an action-packed WorldSSP race at the Pirelli Aragón Round, with Sheridan Morais (Kallio Racing) and PJ Jacobsen (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) joining the French rider on the podium.
With several front-running riders crashing out over the course of the race Mahias, Morais and Jacobsen were left to fight for the victory. Mahias got the better of South Africa’s Morais on the final corner to win by just +0.014s.
Jacobsen was in the hunt for second in the final stages but the American finished a tenth of a second behind the leading two. The win for Mahias sees him take over at the head of the standings after three rounds.
Jules Cluzel (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda) crossed the line three seconds behind the podium finishers in fourth place, with close behind him Michael Canducci (Puccetti Racing Junior Team FMI) in fifth.
Robin Mulhauser (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda) crashed alone on the first lap at turn 7, Niki Tuuli (Kallio Racing) crashed at turn 9 on lap 5, with Kyle Smith (GEMAR Team Lorini) then going down at turn 14 on lap 7 having run at the front in the early stages.
Then there was more drama at the start of lap eight as Federico Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team) was flipped over his bike and Kenan Sofuoglu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) was unable to avoid colliding with Caricasulo’s Yamaha.
Returning World Champion Sofuoglu, who missed the opening two rounds with a hand injury, was taken to the medical centre for check-ups, as was Caricasulo.
The top ten was completed by Roberto Rolfo (Team Factory Vamag), Christian Gamarino (BARDAHL EVAN BROS. Honda Racing), Kyle Ryde (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), Hannes Soomer (WILSport Racedays) and Luke Stapleford (Profile Racing).
Aiden Wagner was the highest finishing Australian in 17th place while Lachlan Epis carded 20th.
Anthony West failed to start after sustaining damage to his machine earlier in the weekend.
“Well I didn’t make the race due to the broken motor. But the up side is I’m still 10th in the championship. And still have a little money to make the next two rounds Assen and Imola. Still need to find the money to finish the other 7 rounds. I can still win this championship and I’m going keep trying to win it. Yamaha have supported me with two new standard motors . So they are already in the UK with a professional engine builder. We have three weeks to build this bike right this time. Thanks to the Dutch EAB team they have taken my Australian bike back to Holland to start the work. I’ll be back to Thailand to race the Asia Road Racing Championship again like I did last year. Racing ARRC is money in my pocket to put back into racing the WSS. Not giving up and working hard to make it all happen.”
There were DNFs for Gino Rea (Team Kawasaki Go Eleven) and Alessandro Zaccone (MV Agusta Reparto Corse), the Englishman stopping midrace and the Italian retiring in the opening stages.
Race winner: Lucas Mahias – GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team
“It was pretty crazy but I was fighting a lot. I had a good strategy, in the beginning it was to follow all the riders and with a lot of wind it was tricky with the race. I am very happy as in the race I was fast in the last corner and Sheridan doesn’t have a lot of confidence in the corner, and the win is good for me and for the team.”
2017 World Supersport Aragon Results
1) L. Mahias (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP team)
2) S. Morais (Kallio Racing)
3) P. Jacobsen (MV Agusta Reparto Corse)
4) J. Cluzel (CIA Landford Insurance Honda)
5) M. Canducci (Puccetti Racing Junior Team FMI)
6) R. Rolfo (Team Factory Vamag)
7) C. Gamarino (BARDAHL EVAN BROS. Honda Racing)
8) K. Ryde (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing)
9) H. Soomer (WILSport Racedays)
10) L. Stapleford (Profile Racing)
11) H. Okubo (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda)
12) R. Hartog (Team Hartog – Jenik – Against Cancer)
13) X. Cardelus Garcia (Race Department ATK#25)
14) Z. Khairuddin (Orelac Racing VerdNatura)
15) K. Watanabe (Team Kawasaki Go Eleven)
16) K. Smith (GEMAR Team Lorini)
17) A. Wagner (GEMAR Team Lorini)
18) N. Calero (Orelac Racing VerdNatura)
19) P. Sebestyén (SSP Hungary by Pedercini Racing)
20) L. Epis (Response RE Racing)
21) S. Hill (Profile Racing)
22) J. Cretaro (RSV Phoenix Suzuki)
23) H. Kunikawa (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda)
24) J. Van Sikkelerus (MVR Racing)
25) N. Al Malki (Qatar National Team)
26) C. London (RSV Phoenix Suzuki)
RT) F. Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP team)
RT) K. Sofuoglu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing)
RT) G. Rea (Team Kawasaki Go Eleven)
RT) N. Tuuli (Kallio Racing)
RT) L. Cresson (SC Racing-RPM84)
RT) A. Zaccone (MV Agusta Reparto Corse)
RT) R. Mulhauser (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda)
World Supersport Championship Standings
- Mahias 45
- Rolfo 40
- Morais 34
- Ryde 32
- Tuuli 27
- Jacobsen 26
- Caricasulo 25
- Kraisart 20
- Wagner 17
- West 16
STK1000 riders have no answer for Italian’s dominance
The swooping MotorLand Aragon circuit played host for the opening European Superstock 1000 championship round, and Michael Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing –Junior Team) dominated the 13 lap race under sunny Spanish skies.
Starting from pole position, the Italian rider was able to lead lap from pole position and took a strong lead from the first lap. By the end of the first lap he had a lead of over 0.3s over Maximilian Schieb (Nuova M2 Racing), who later crashed at turn four on lap six. This left the door wide open for Florian Marino (PATA Yamaha Official STK1000 Team), who took control of second position and crossed the line 3.587s behind the race winner.
Roberto Tamburini (PATA Yamaha Official STK1000 Team) made up for a tough day yesterday and completed the podium around MotorLand, and was again a lonely 6.732s back from the race winner.
2016’s regular podium finisher Toprak Razgatlioglu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) fought for a podium finish in the closing laps, but was unable to make it to the line and finished in fourth position overall.
Marco Faccani (Althea BMW Racing Team) completed the top five ahead of Frenchman Jeremy Guarnoni (Pedercini Racing Kawasaki), in sixth. Illia Mykhalchyk (TripleM Racing) made a strong jump throughout the race, and was able to finish in the top eight, ahead of Mike Jones (Aruba.it Racing – Junior Team) in ninth, and Marvin Fritz (Bayer-Bikerbox Yamaichi) rounded out the top ten.
Mike Jones scored seven championship points from his ninth place finish. The young Queenslander was battling for a possible spot on the rostrum before a missed gear pushed him back down through the pack.
Glenn Scott brought the Agro On-Benjan Kawasaki home in 22nd place.
“I’m happy to say this year I crossed the finish line! I had a great start from 29th but I won’t lie about being terribly nervous the first few laps, but then I found my groove and I was off. I improved massively, lapping the fastest I had all weekend and making up positions towards the end of the race. Not many racers would be happy with 22nd but today I am. It’s been a long 12 months and I couldn’t be happier to be back racing again. A big thanks to my team, my sponsors and Al Samuels for their support.”
WorldSSP300: Deroue wins enthralling maiden WorldSSP300
Dutchman makes history with first win in new series from pole, with Spaniards Valle and Perez also on the rostrum
At the Pirelli Aragón Round on Sunday Scott Deroue (MTM HS Kawasaki) made history with victory in the first ever race of the new WorldSSP300 series, the young Dutchman joined on the podium in Spain by two Spaniards, Daniel Valle (Halcourier Racing) and Mika Perez (WILSport Racedays).
Former Moto3 rider Deroue started on pole and used his Grand Prix experience to eventually fend off his rivals, crossing the line just 0.047s ahead of Valle after a brilliant race, with Perez also in the hunt for maximum points. Perez had led the race and looked strong for several laps but would ultimately have to settle for third, 0.127s behind Deroue.
Borja Sanchez (Halcourier Racing) was in the mix for the win too, sitting at the back of the front group over the last two laps and finally reaching the checkered flag less than a second off P1.
Angelo Licciardi (Team Trasimeno) finished in fifth place, 10 seconds behind the leading riders. Paolo Grassia (3570 Made in CIV), Giuseppe De Gruttola (SK Racing), Dorren Loureiro (DS Junior Team), Paolo Giacomini (Terra e Moto) and another ex-Moto3™ rider Ana Carrasco (ETG Racing) completed the top ten.
Mykyta Kalinin (Team MOTOXRACING) slid out of the lead with seven laps to go at turn ten, before Kimi Patova (Kallio Racing) and Chris Taylor (MTM HS Kawasaki) crashed out together at turn 17, with five laps to go.
Robert Schotman (GRT Yamaha WorldSSP300 Team) then crashed out of the podium hunt at turn 4 of the penultimate lap. Enzo de la Vega (GRT Yamaha WorldSSP300 Team) was an unfortunate crasher right at the end of the race, as he slid off on the final corner.
Avalon Biddle (Sourz Foods – Benjan Racing) and wild card Marc Garcia (Halcourier Racing) both suffered DNFs due to technical problems.
Race winner: Scott Deroue – MTM HS Kawasaki
“The start of the race was good but it was quite difficult with the wind, as it makes a big difference on these bikes, but then I saw Perez and Kalinin and I thought okay I need to push and then Kalinin crash so I push and make the gap and get better. On the last lap I was able to take the win, it’s been an awesome week and awesome weekend.”
AragonWorldSBK: WorldSSP300 Race
1. Scott Deroue (NED) Kawasaki
2. Daniel Valle (ESP) Yamaha +0.047
3. Mika Perez (ESP) Honda +0.127