Phillip Island Superbike Statements and Analysis
The first round of the World SBK 2014 took place yesterday in Phillip Island, Australia. To complete our live reports, here are the statements of the Superbike riders as well as the Site analysis of the two Australian races.
Analysis of the World Superbike at Phillip Island
Sunday evening, Loris Baz did not go by four ways, proposing to rename Phillip Island the "French Island"! Indeed, the French have made the Marseillaise resonate twice and have animated the three Australian races (, and).
We note incidentally that without the injury of Sylvain Barrier – replaced by the local champion Glenn Allerton – no Australian rider would have participated in this first round of the 2014 Superbike world championship … all the more reason to rename the Island of Arthur Phillip, no ?!
We must admit that our compatriots had a little pot this Sunday. But this has nothing to do with the famous "beginner’s luck" since Sylvain Guintoli, Loris Baz and Jules Cluzel are currently among the best motorcycle racers..
The engine failures of Kennedy in SSP then Laverty in SBK2 from which our three musketeers benefited are more akin to the bargains which must be taken advantage of by – futures ?! – champions. In World Supersport, Cluzel also took advantage of the falls of Sofuoglu and Van den Mark…
Interrupted in its eighth lap, the WSSP race was only restarted for five laps, so as not to upset the course of the program – especially televised! – World Superbike. The pilots therefore left for 22 km: a good half-marathon for runners, but a short sprint for motorcycle riders. !
The exercise promised to be very perilous, but Kenan Sofuoglu (three-time Supersport world champion) and Michael van den Mark (winner of the Superstock 600 cup in 2012) both went to fault, unlike Jules, but also Florian Marino (cocorico bis!), Rafaelle de Rosa, Kevin Coghlan and Roberto Tamburini.
Cluzel takes over from Agostini !
These five men got the best out of their Diablo Supercorsa, delivering a spectacle that is as short as it is pleasing. Finally, the most experienced won on a "factory" F3 certainly, but far from being perfectly developed….
"We were terribly unlucky both during the winter testing and at the start of the weekend", testifies the French n ° 16."We did a lot less laps than we should have. Therefore, winning the race was just a dream !"
Concentrated, incisive and intelligent, our "Coq Supersportif" managed his business perfectly and climbed the top step of the podium. A step that no MV Agusta had reached for more than 37 years: the last was the 350 Grand Prix, on August 29, 1976 in the company of the great Agostini !
For Giovanni Castiglioni, boss of the Italian firm, Cluzel’s feat represents "a wonderful victory, an indescribable thrill. I would like to dedicate this first victory to my father, whose faith in MV and his ability to shine again in competition has remained unwavering, as well as to the late father of Brian Gillen, our racing department director.".
For Jules, it is a "deserved victory, we still have a long way to go, but we are convinced that the bike and the team have enormous potential". The Yakhnich team, which collaborates this year with MV Agusta, continues its harvest of trophies, a few months after winning the title with Sam Lowes and the Yamaha R6.
In Superbike as in Supersport, tire management was essential to appear well in the final classification. The first race surprised more than one driver, starting with our "Guinters" himself who admits (in his statement published on the front page) to having "knocked out" his rear tire a little too quickly…
The Pirellis got hot
The temperature on the track on Sunday was significantly higher than those observed during the two previous test days and the two test days at the start of the week: 32 ° at the start of the first Superbike race, and up to 48 ° during the second !
In these conditions, having an impeccably tuned machine was essential in order to limit as much as possible the stresses on the rear tire whose left sidewall is severely tested on the Australian track, particularly in the final curve which controls the line. right.
Too greedy in the first round, Sylvain Guintoli changed his strategy for the second. Without the little help from the Suzuki, who knows what Aprilia n ° 50 had in store for us at the end of the race that Tom Sykes, struggling in the first round but much more impressive in the second, was counting on spicing up !
Author of a time almost as good as the record posted by Sylvain (1 ‘31.421 in the 12th lap for Guintoli against 1’ 31.440 for Sykes in the 14th), "Major Tom" did not have the opportunity to launch the slightest attack on the leading trio.
Propelled to the third step of the Australian podium by the retirement of Laverty, Sykes aimed for an even better place. If only that of the first Kawasaki rider, occupied in both races by the big one – by size as much as by talent! – Loris Baz.
Injured in the back last summer, lieutenant "Bazooka" took advantage of the winter break to recover from his injury and prepare to draw at the start of the season … Mission accomplished for Loris who won a solid 5th place in the first round and climbed on the fifth podium of his career WSBK in second.
We congratulate the two other French riders at the start this Sunday, on their Kawasaki ZX-10R "Evo": Fabien Foret and Jeremy Guarnoni. The n ° 9 had a superb second round, finishing in the wheel of Salom and Canepa, while the n ° 11 had to suffer to get two points in the first round.
"Well, first race in SBK: it’s done !"Jey says on his Facebook page."A more than difficult weekend because of a big fall which hurt me both physically and mentally … The feeling is starting to come back, I can’t wait to be in Aragon on a circuit that I know well and especially 100% physically".
The Evos are in tune
In his report, Pirelli moto racing director Giorgio Barbier congratulated the best representatives of the Evo category: "Using the same tires as the Superbike racers, Salom and Canepa achieved excellent results".
"I’ll be curious to see how they perform in Europe, when Evo riders benefit from a specific rear racing tire that should narrow the gap by a few tenths of a second with Superbike riders.".
This good news will concern both Fabien Foret, Jeremy Guarnoni, but also, we hope, the double Superstock 1000 champion on BMW, Sylvain Barrier, to whom we wish a speedy recovery. !
Among the – real – Superbikes, it is Chaz Davies who has won praise from the Italian manager. Author of the best time in the race, the official Ducati rider wins "the first "Pirelli Best Lap" award of the year and sets a new record, three tenths of a second below that set by Laverty in 2013".
The Galois set his time on his first lap but unfortunately could not maintain this pace for very long, his times blithely exceeding 1 ‘33.5 in the last third of the race while his direct rivals were still running under 1’ 32…
In the second round, the new recruit of Borgo Panigale was unlucky: a sensor put out of service by a stone clamped down his machine. "I come home with points, a lap record and a nice tan", tweets # 7,"it could be worse".
The 2010 Supersport world champion also observes that he is leaving "healthy which is not always easy on Philip Island"… and what was especially not won at the end of his phenomenal highside which took place on Friday in the famous Lukey Heights.
Luckier but also wiser – who would have believed it? – his teammate Davide Giugliano leaves Australia without laurels, but two fourth places and 26 points in his pocket, only two less than his compatriot Marco Melandri, who was expected much more on the second official Aprilia !
Ducatis surprise, Suzuki confirm
Sensational in the first round, Eugene Laverty masterfully won his first race on his GSX-R 1000. He thus becomes the first World Superbike rider to win two consecutive victories on two different machines..
But the Irish n ° 58 could even have doubled the stake: winner of the last two races at Jerez last October on the official RSV4, he was fighting again for the victory in the second round, before the "drama"…
"Sweet sour day after our engine exploded in race two, but even that can’t erase the smile from my face", tweet the" serial twitter "who prefers to see his"glass half full"rather than half empty.
On the other side of the Suzuki Crescent box, disappointment takes over: the young British Superbike champion – the youngest in history! – could not transform its excellent winter tests. Worse, he messed up his foot badly…
"Alex was so unlucky to dislocate his ankle in his fall on Saturday morning when many other riders crashed heavily and got away with no damage", observes team manager Paul Denning.
"The injury prevented him from entering the corners properly, and his difficulty in retracting gears (selector up on racing machines, Editor’s note) inevitably complicated its course and resulted in errors", continues the boss Suz ‘.
"The most frustrating part of it all", concludes Mister Denning,"is that he was always so fast and that he could have joined the fight at the forefront". MNC notes that this observation is ironically similar to those established for the former member of the team: Leon Camier, the remarkable English champion (2009) who has never made it into the WSBK … Site: stay connected !
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