News 4 Oct 2015

Haslam splashes his way to French WorldSBK Superpole

Aussies strong in wet track conditions on Saturday.

Source: Supplied.

Source: Supplied.

Leon Haslam (Aprilia Racing Team – Red Devils) has taken the penultimate Tissot-Superpole of the 2015 season, the first fully wet qualifying of the year after the heavens opened at the Circuit Nevers de Magny-Cours shortly before Superpole 1 began.

Despite ending the session in the gravel after crashing in the final moments of SP2, the Briton edged out the newly-crowned world champion Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) by 0.004s.

This is the second pole position for Haslam this year and only the third of his long World Superbike career.

Joining Haslam and Rea on the front row of the grid for tomorrow’s 21-lap races will be, for the second consecutive round, Niccolò Canepa (Althea Racing), after the wet conditions threw up some surprises at the front of the grid.

Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team), Sylvain Guintoli (Pata Honda World Superbike Team), Chaz Davies ( Racing – Ducati SBK Team) and Alex Lowes (Voltcom Crescent Suzuki) all crashed, Lowes’ incident bringing out the red flags.

The session restarted with two minutes and 46 seconds remaining meaning that it was a one lap shoot-out to decide the grid.

Row two will see Davies, Guintoli and Luca Scassa ( Racing – Ducati Superbike Team), while a competitive Leon Camier heads up the third row that also comprises Ayrton Badovini (BMW Motorrad Italia) and Tom Sykes.

Scassa and Camier were the two riders who made their way through Superpole 1 and into the final session. 10th on the grid will be Markus Reiterberger (VanZon Rehema BMW), from Alex Lowes and Jordi Torres (Aprilia Racing Team – Red Devils).

PJ Jacobsen (CORE Motorsport Thailand) kept the pressure on Champion elect Kenan Sofuoglu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) by leaving it until his final lap to steal the WSS Pole Position at Magny-Cours.

Lucas Mahias (MG Competition) bounced back from an early session tumble to snatch the final spot on the front row of the grid after some great repair work by his team.

Jacobsen will start a World Supersport race from pole for the second time this year; his maiden front-grid start was at Sepang two months ago.

Despite an early crash, Kyle Smith (Pata Honda World Supersport Team) was able to salvage a fourth-place start in the final moments of the session, before he tumbled off again.

The Briton will be joined on the second row by Italian Alex Baldolini, aboard his privately entered Race Department ATK#25 MV Agusta, and compatriot Gino Rea (CIA Landlords Insurance Honda), who took an impressive sixth.

Lorenzo Zanetti (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) finished seventh ahead of the CIA Landlords Insurance trio of Martin Cardenas, Kevin Manfredi and Aiden Wagner, who rounded out the top 10.

Wet track conditions heavily affected the qualifying proceedings as seventeen individual crashes were recorded during the 45 minutes of track-time available to the riders.

The final FIM Superstock 1000 Cup Pole Position of the season was taken by Frenchman Jeremy Guarnoni (Team Trasimeno) from Bryan Staring (Team Pedercini) and Ondrej Jezek (Triple-M by Barni).

Difficult and tricky conditions saw the two title contenders Lorenzo Savadori (Nuova M2 Racing) and Roberto Tamburini (Team MotoxRacing) qualify 8th and 17th respectively.

The session was a crash-strewn affair as many riders fell, as they tip-toed their way around the slippery French circuit.

The final 13-lap race in the 2015 FIM Europe Superstock 600cc Championship was won by last year’s EJC winner Augusto Fernandez (Pata Honda Junior Team) over Axel Bassani (Berclaz Racing Team) and Toprak Razgatliogliu (Kawasaki Puccetti).

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