News 22 Jun 2009

WSBK: Xaus best of the Beemers after Corser's warm-up crash

BMW Motorrad:

The first race at Misano today saw the riders line up on a soaking wet track with all of them on full wet tyres. But with conditions rapidly changing, and the prospect of World Superbike’s first ever ‘flag-to-flag’ race in the offing, all the teams had spare bikes, shod with slicks, at the ready in the pit-lane for a changeover when the track dried out.

BMW Motorrad Motorsport rider Ruben Xaus took advantage of the tricky conditions and charged his way up from 18th on the grid to first place and led the race with just seven laps to go. But when he changed bikes, he was adjudged to have exceeded the pit-lane speed limit and he was given a ‘ride-through’ penalty. He fought his way back into the race and ended 14th. Troy’s race was over before he could even start. An electronic problem on the warm-up lap caused a highside and he crashed out, fortunately without doing further damage to his injured right shoulder.

Ben Spies (Yamaha) won the 24-lapper, with Shane Byrne (Ducati) second and Michel Fabrizio (Ducati) third.

Race two started in the dry and, apart from a few spots of rain, continued to remain a dry race. Ruben finished just out of the points in 16th, but ended lapping in similar times to the leaders. Troy had inconsistency problems with his S 1000 RR, but kept going as hard as he could and ended 19th. Jonathan Rea (Honda) had a race long battle with Michel Fabrizio and Noriyuki Haga (Ducati), but held them both off to record his maiden WSBK victory.

Ruben – Race 1: 14th, Race 2: 16th
It felt really good leading the race, knowing that I was beating all the guys who were all on exactly the same tyres as me. I felt comfortable in the damp conditions and if the track had stayed wet, maybe we could’ve done something that would’ve surprised everybody. But unfortunately for me, the track dried and we all had to come in and jump on to our spare bikes – with dry tyres. Our pit box is quite close to the pit-lane exit, so I didn’t think I had gone faster than the limit, but I got a ride-though penalty and that was enough for us to lose a top place. It’s always difficult knowing when to come in and change bikes, but this was a first for all of us and something we’ll have to get used to. In race two, I decided to adapt my riding style to the bike and I learnt a lot in that race and was happy because, at the end, I was lapping as quickly as the top guys.

Troy – Race 1: DNS, Race 2: 19th
Well that was a day to forget for me and a shame because Friday had gone so well and I felt that we were getting somewhere. I was highsided on the warm-up lap and we’re not sure why, but we think it was some sort of electronics problem. I didn’t open the throttle dramatically, but suddenly the bike just went faster and spat me off. Luckily I didn’t do any further harm to my shoulder, but my race was over.

In race two, the bike felt kind of inconsistent and I wasn’t confident what it was going to do every time I entered or exited the corners. I could have pulled in, but I kept going because I knew that every lap I stayed out would give the team more information to work with. It’s been a frustrating day for me and the team, but I am sure we will have a better weekend in Donington.

Berti Hauser (BMW Motorrad Motorsport)
After the positive start on Friday, and all the changes, we were hoping for better results – especially as the technical aspects were going in the right direction. Our Superpole was not so successful and we were a bit confused in the first race. We have to find the reason for Troy’s crash, but we will do so. We had some exciting moments when Ruben was leading, but maybe we made a tactical mistake by changing bikes a bit too late. It was unfortunate that Ruben got a ride-thorough for speeding in pit-lane because that ruined what could’ve been a good result.

Race two was disappointing, but at the end of it we saw that Ruben could lap as fast as the front guys. We’re not sure why Troy struggled with the behaviour of his bike, but it’s something that we will have to investigate. We didn’t detect any problems in practice, but we’ll analyse all the data and make the necessary changes to carry on improving.A League of Their Own release