WSBK – Statements and analysis of the Superbike in Laguna Seca – Analysis of the World Superbike in Laguna Seca

Statements and analysis of the Superbike at Laguna Seca

WSBK - Statements and analysis of the Superbike in Laguna Seca - Analysis of the World Superbike in Laguna Seca

The ninth round of the World SBK 2014 took place yesterday in Laguna Seca, USA. To complete our live reports, here are the statements of the Superbike riders as well as the Site analysis of the two American races.

Analysis of the World Superbike in Laguna Seca

Last Thursday, Sylvain Guintoli had the knife between his teeth: "Laguna is our last race before the summer break", reported No. 50 Aprilia."Like in Portugal, we have to attack and take risks to keep the league open"… Easier said than done !

During his, Sylvain had eliminated despite himself, his teammate Melandri. Also, when "Guinters" found himself in the back wheel of his teammate again during the first round at Laguna Seca, the boy was very careful not to make any mistakes..

Several times, especially in the eleventh and last corner of the small – but strong! – Californian layout, Sylvain pretended to shift under braking but never triggered an attack, for fear of crushing the Ravenna Hedgehog placed just in front of him.

In doing so, our vigilant compatriot allowed the Italian to take stock of his RSV4 on Sunday noon, to take his marks on the sun-drenched circuit – no rain like in Portimao! -, and to take … the powder escamper past the halfway, thus obtaining the 16th victory of his career in World Superbike, that is to say as much as Falappa, Hodgson and Toseland, per favore !

At the same time, however, Guintoli managed to keep his great rival in the championship at bay – Tom Sykes, who else ?! – and finished this first round on the second step of the podium, ensuring his employer in passing a third double this season (against six for the Sykes and Baz duo of Kawasaki).

Arriving last week in the United States, Mister Guintoli also said: "I can’t wait to be there because last year I set the track record in Superpole, but then I lost my concentration, frustrated that I was by the multiple red flags".

And one, and two, and three starts !

Site readers – who, as everyone knows, are a little luckier than others – know that those "fucking red flags" have once again thwarted the plans of our top motorcycle speed rep. Saperlipopette !

Before them, Tom Sykes had already damaged Sylvain’s capital confidence by coldly descending the Frenchman’s record at Laguna Seca during the Superpole on Saturday. Sunday, the second round of the 2014 American race was interrupted twice and reduced to just seven laps.

But this sprint did not escape "Super Sykes" who, before being the world champion of Superbike and collector of victories (22 to date) that we know, was renowned for his incredible abilities to snap a pendulum in qualifying ‘then to make a thunderous start to the race … and devastating for his rear tire !

Unable to keep pace with the English Ninja, Sylvain Guintoli had to settle for a new second place, his fifth of the season. In total, the Aprilia rider scored 40 points this weekend, one point less than Sykes, now 44 lengths behind the Frenchie in the general classification..

If a comment accompanied the marks awarded for each World Superbike event, Sylvain could undoubtedly read an unpleasant one on his bulletin – the author of his lines knows what he is talking about – "Can do better"After all, his box neighbor Marco had a better result in the first race with the same equipment !

During this same first round, Tom Sykes received directly from his ZX-10R a "driving warning" from his first passage in Corkscrew! Entered much too hard into the "pif" of the American "corkscrew", Sykes almost spilled into the "paf"…

Sykes, that’s it

Without looking for it, the "Number One" of the World Superbike (photo!) Copied the exit of the famous n ° 93 from the track during the last Grand Prix in California (Laguna Seca is no longer on the MotoGP program). The jury will not hold it against him, insofar as Marquez was himself inspired by "the inimitable" n ° 46.

Too generous on the throttle or not brutal enough with the brake lever? Too obsessed with his breakaway attempt or not focused enough at the start of the race "ahead of time"? Whatever the reason, Sykes came very close to the fall and a probable zero point..

It is difficult to imagine – wedged in the back of his sofa, a cup of herbal tea in hand, jet lag with the west coast of the United States forcing – the violent adrenaline rush that Tom had to undergo while crossing this portion of land in Corkscrew, a sequence already devilishly impressive to negotiate on the asphalt !

The English Ninja miraculously remained on his feet, but was immediately overtaken by these two main opponents Melandri then Guintoli … If these two small doses of additional epinephrine did not confuse the world champion, they probably participated the lack of fighting at the forefront at the start of the race.

Subsequently, it was the lack of traction at the end of the curve of its rear axle which prevented "Major Tom" from clinching better than third place in the first American race. He nevertheless collected 16 big points, to be added to the 25 obtained in the second round, the best settings of his ZX-10R allowing him to win, without changing the type of tire..

"During the races, with the rear soft tires (from SC0, Editor’s note) available to anyone in the market, the racing pace was extremely high, congratulated himself this morning Giorgio Barbier, competition director at Pirelli Moto.

Pirelli is proud of its children

"We can therefore be truly satisfied with the performance of our standard tires, both in terms of grip and longevity."… With the fastest time in the race this Sunday in 1 ‘23.403, Davide Giugliano and his Ducati n ° 34 Chaussee de Pirelli gave Marquez less than two seconds, his RCV and his Bridgestones. Mamma mia !

On Saturday, it was the n ° 1 Kawasaki that had managed to make the most of the extra-soft qualifying tires: "Tom Sykes stunned everyone as he improved the track record Guintoli set in September last year by almost a second", insisted the big Italian boss.

The new WSBK record around Laguna Seca is 1 ‘21.811 … For comparison, that of MotoGP (absolute record signed by Lorenzo in 2012) is 1’ 20.554: next year, the new Superbike machines will be they more or less close to the Grand Prix prototypes? Mystery and gumballs … Italian, of course.

Extremely efficient therefore, Pirelli tires do not tolerate all overconfidence, do not forgive all overzealousness, and sometimes severely penalize driving errors. Site also observes that there were many falls during the race this Sunday !

The series started in the first round with Chaz Davies, victim of a "highside" in the second round. Not particularly ample or impressive, however, the ejection was sufficiently dry and strong to severely sound the Welsh pilot.

The Ducati official n ° 7 would have liked to participate in the second round to "transform" his very good tests on Saturday (3rd on the grid), but the medical team forbade him, as a precaution. All the hopes of the Bologna plant therefore rested on the shoulders of Davide Giugliano (4th on the grid, heir to 3rd therefore)….

Falls in the "roller coasters" of California

Fourth in the first race, the Italian n ° 34 did not fail at the foot of the podium in the second round, but in the middle of the descent of the Corkscrew following a "lowside"! Strong – and especially lucky not to have been hit … -, Davide was able to clear the track quickly, returning to the pits with Marco.

Melandri bit the dust too, falling – all alone like a grown-up – in the last corner, the very one where Guintoli had carefully spared his teammate in the first heat. Quickly back in the saddle, Melandri spared his little comrades the ordeal of a third start … for the same race !

Because the second round had already been stopped twice! The first interruption took place in the 10th lap, following the fall of Alex Lowes in the delicate sequence of the "corkscrew". The n ° 22 Suzuki rider had almost taken the n ° 76 Kawasaki with him….

"Very hard weekend", Loris Baz aptly concludes on his Facebook page,"a rather nice circuit (on which the very first Ninja GPZ900R was unveiled 30 years ago, editor’s note!) But I never felt comfortable on the bike, we got lost in the settings on Friday and found the right direction too late after the first round which was the worst of my life ".

"I save some points in the championship anyway, and I’m more motivated than ever for the last four races". 200 points to be won at most for the best drivers in the championship, of which our national Bazooka is undoubtedly part. !

Third in the championship by disembarking in the United States, Loris leaves the new continent in fourth position, overtaken by Jonathan Rea: the Honda rider totals 261 points, "our" Kawasaki rider 253. They are therefore respectively 64 and 72 lengths behind the leader..

The second interruption of the second round, we owe it to Sylvain Barrier …. or to Chris Iddon rather, since "Syl’20" is in no way responsible for his fall on Sunday afternoon, while he was fought valiantly for first place in the Evo category…

Not the foot for Barrier…

"Sylvain has certainly not lost control of his motorcycle", logically wishes to specify those around him!"It was unfortunately hit by a pilot at the exit of the last corner, which is not at all the same thing….."

"According to the medical team on site, he has a sprained ankle and a slight fracture in his heel.", we learn from his relatives. A much lesser evil in view of his fall and the long minutes spent on the tarmac, before being placed in a stretcher and evacuated from the track in an ambulance.

After his Superbike accidents in Australia and the road in France, poor Sylvain verified the adage "never two without three"this weekend in the United States."He is returning to France this evening and will take additional exams in Lyon tomorrow (Wednesday)", warns our interlocutor.

The two-time Superstock 1000 champion will therefore probably not be able to participate in the official tests scheduled for July 21 and 22 on the Portimao circuit. But he will be back in great shape on September 7 in Jerez, for the tenth event – his third … – of the 2014 WSBK season. !

Born and rewarded in the USA

Finally, Site would like to congratulate "Mr." Erik Buell: his brand is the first of American origin to register a point (two in fact!) In the history of the Superbike world championship. A great reward for EBR who is playing his very first season at the highest level…

For the record, it was the "wild card" pilot Larry Pegram who unlocked the East Troy firm’s counter. Registered in AMA Superbike on his 1190 RX, the 41 year old American rider – old biker that I loved! – outclassed his colleagues May and Yates.

In their report, the Americans do not hide the fact that their best driver took advantage of the absence of the Bimota in the final classification, transforming his 16th place into a more satisfying and encouraging 14th..

"I hope that we can continue to progress in this way during the last four events."Geoff May said Sunday night,"and that we will be able to participate in our first Superpole"… A dream – American – which has nothing inaccessible: last Saturday on" its "Californian track, the n ° 99 was passed to 14 thousandths of a second of the SP1…

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