WSBK – Ben Spies reacts in Salt Lake City! – Second Superbike race

Ben Spies reacts in Salt Lake City !

WSBK - Ben Spies reacts in Salt Lake City! - Second Superbike race

The Salt Lake City event closes the first half of the 2009 SBK World Cup season … After Haga and Fabrizio demonstrated at Kyalami, Spies took advantage of his time in the USA to score big points. And the Supersports are also part of the trip !

Second Superbike race

The third start of the Superbike day (see the first SBK race) saw Ben Spies impose his law again, despite a strong takeoff from Fabrizio. Checa passed the first corner in 3rd position ahead of Haga, Biaggi, Rea and Kiyonari.

Again, Spies separates from his comrades with disconcerting speed! Fabrizio mistreats his Ducati as much as he can but nothing helps: the Yamaha n ° 19 takes 8 tenths from the second intermediate !

At the end of the first straight line, Max Biaggi tries to put the brakes on Noriyuki Haga, but the Italian is forced to widen: Johnny Rea takes the opportunity to jump to 5th place! The Englishman takes 4th place in the following straight line of a Noriyuki Haga whose Ducati lacks "Nitro"…

In front, Ben Spies takes his lead to a second and a half. Michel Fabrizio is 2nd, Carlos Checa 3rd … until the Spaniard bites the dust of Utah in the 4th lap! His damaged Honda, the n ° 7 is forced to retire…

"As I was trying to catch up with Fabrizio, I entered the chicane a little more sharply than before perhaps, I hit the vibrator with my crankcase and it was the end of the race for me", specifies on his return to the Carlos Checa stand.

Luca Scassa (Kawasaki n ° 99) is the victim of Hacking (Kawa n ° 2) confusing speed and haste during his ascent … Unlike the Italian who falls and remains on the ground, the American regains the track and sets off again last.

On the 5th lap, Spies leads comfortably ahead of Fabrizio, who is riding solo. Rea, who has just inherited 3rd place from his teammate Checa, has to deal with the pressure exerted by Haga, Biaggi, Kiyonari and Haslam! Behind this small group, Nakano and Smrz try to stay in touch.

It is then that the race direction is slightly tangled: it announces the fall of Jakub Smrz while it concerns his teammate Gregorio Lavilla – announced to Kyalami as the replacement for the remainder of the season of Brendan Roberts. The Czech, qualifying pro, is still in the race !

What’s more, Jakub passes in front of Shinya and joins Noriyuki, Max, Ryuichi and Leon fighting for the last step of the podium: these six drivers who are practically in the same second skillfully spice up a race dominated by Spies and Fabrizio..

The BMWs also provide the show, but too far away to benefit from good visibility: Xaus and Corser fight for the first points in the company of Parkes and Zemke, the replacement of John Hopkins on the second Honda Stiggy…

"With each braking or change of angle, I felt that I did not have enough force ", regrets the Australian Croco n ° 11:"I also had a problem with the tire turning on the rim, which did not help"…

Halfway through the race, Spies continues to parade in front, scrupulously keeping his second and a half ahead of Fabrizio who defends the Ducati colors high, Haga being too weak to take charge personally..

The third place is coveted by Honda: Rea, Haslam and Kiyonari are united against Aprilia de Biaggi and Ducati de Smrz. Haga’s 1098 and Nakano’s RSV4 are definitely on the loose, but the fight doesn’t end between them !

Five laps to go, Leon Haslam went on the attack and finished one lap ahead of Jonathan Rea. But when braking on the straight line, Leon gave in: he widened and had to return his 3rd place to Johnny. Just behind, Kiyonari, Biaggi and Smrz do not miss a beat of the show !

"I had to drive as slowly as possible and contain the guys behind me", admit Johnny Rea … Indeed, his front end poses a problem and does not allow him to stay in contact with Spies or Fabrizio. On the other hand,"the power of the CBR1000RR in the straights"allows him to stay in front of Haslam !

At the forefront, Ben Spies raises the tone and disgusts Michel Fabrizio: the lead of the American reaches 3.8 seconds in the 17th lap, after which the Italian must let the Texan slip away. "I attacked to try to reach him", says the Italian,"maybe a little too strong because in the last laps my front tire was rinsed".

The gap between Spies and Rea, on the other hand, remains stable in the very last laps: the fight for 3rd place intensifies !

Glued to Rea’s rear wheel, Haslam fails to dislodge his compatriot from his 3rd place and ends up being the victim of his fierceness: in a very fast left, Leon loses the front and sees his podium hopes vanish for good…

"I’m disappointed, but again the pace I had was good and everything was fine"Says" Pocket Rocket "Haslam, who plans to step onto all the podiums in the second half of the season,"once our little worries are settled" !

Ben Spies can nod his head and cross the finish line on the back wheel – he and his R1 have been perfect this weekend! "The second race was tough and I almost feel like I stole the victory from Michel who drove so well", claims the unbeatable n ° 19.

Nine seconds later, it’s Fabrizio’s turn to pass the checkered flag, then you have to wait five more seconds to see Rea tumble.

Max Biaggi finished 4th ahead of Kiyonari, Smrz, Nakano, Haga, Sykes and Byrne. Noriyuki Haga therefore adds to his seven points from the 1st round eight new points: "I was not 100% today and did not expect to win, but I am happy to have collected points which are important for the championship".

In the general classification, Spies (212 points) regained his 2nd place but Fabrizio remained very close (201). Haga retains the lead but is "only" 53 points ahead of Ben. Behind the three leading men, four drivers are fighting for 4th place: Rea (133), Biaggi (126), Haslam (122) and Sykes (113).

Among the manufacturers, Ducati (311 points) took advantage of Fabrizio’s good performance to resist against Yamaha (253). Honda remains in contact with 206 points, far ahead of Aprilia (129), Suzuki (113), BMW (60) and Kawasaki (41).

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