WSBK – Statements and analysis of the Superbike in Portimao – Analysis of the World Superbike in Portimao

Statements and analysis of the Superbike in Portimao

WSBK - Statements and analysis of the Superbike in Portimao - Analysis of the World Superbike in Portimao

The sixth round of the World SBK 2013 took place on Sunday in Portimao, Portugal. To complete our live reports, here are the statements of the Superbike riders as well as the Site analysis of the two Portuguese races.

Analysis of the World Superbike in Portimao

This year again, the Portuguese World Superbike event offered us a great show. After having followed a somewhat disjointed but ultra tight Superpole on Saturday (read), the few spectators present the next day in the stands were able to follow two races full of twists and turns !

Are the mechanics starting to tire or are the pilots just out of luck? Still, the was marked by several withdrawals: Jonathan Rea, Eugene Laverty and Ayrton Badovini in the first round, Leon Camier in the second…

Rea was therefore the first to withdraw from the race on Sunday noon. "I can only apologize again for the problem he had on the bike as that shouldn’t happen", declared sheepishly – and discreet about the source of the problem – Pieter Breddels, technical coordinator of the Honda Pata team..

Mechanical concerns for Rea…

Always slowed down – and stopped in this case! – by the electronics of his CBR1000RR, the Northern Irishman tries to look good in his official statements, but we can easily imagine the level of exasperation of Johnny vis-à-vis this motorcycle which stubbornly refuses to transmit to the ground any the power of its 4-cylinder…

But at this level of competition, the tiniest tenth of a second in a lap counts! This is – a little – less the case in the Isle of Man, a competition that the Fireblade still largely dominated last week in the company of Michael Dunlop, John McGuinness and other Bruce Anstey.

"Be careful, at TT the pilots do not want this electronic assistance", pointed out to us an American colleague (crossed during the world presentation of the MV Agusta F3 800) to whom Guy Martin had recently granted an interview.

"Guy explained to me that he and his little friends spend half the time on a single wheel when driving on the Isle of Man, so that the electronics are unable to keep up. !"Unfortunately for Jonathan Rea, unplugging the system doesn’t help the situation … it even makes it worse, according to him! Damned…

This handicap did not however prevent the Northern Irishman from getting on the podium in the second round. This is his "seventh podium at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve", accounts his team, and his first this season. It was about time !

…and for the Laverty Twitter Serial

Four minutes after Jonathan, it was Eugene Laverty’s turn to put down his RSV4 on the edge of the track, annoyed … Victim of a "breakdown" in the middle of the straight line, the formidable sprinter of Noale left again dropping his irish pilot.

"We must be cursed at noon"Yudjine" tweeted Sunday night on his Twitter account. "Aragon, Monza, Portimao: technical problems in each first round", summarized the Aprilia rider, winner of four second races this season … including that of Portimao !

Impossible to follow on the wavy Portuguese track Sunday afternoon, Eugene can – and must – be "followed" by any self-respecting WSBK fan (MNC has just created for their attention one on which the main drivers and teams are referenced. ).

Indeed, the sympathetic Eugene makes some very interesting remarks there, such as for example: "we really know how to celebrate a double at @ApriliaOfficial. After the podium ceremony @SylvainGuintoli and I pissed in a cup. #antidoping".

To which Sylvain Guintoli himself replied: "@eugenelaverty @ApriliaOfficial: I told them the RSV4 Factory was on steroids, but they didn’t find it funny". Not sure that his teammate fully savored this joke either: by the way, what was due to the" breakdown "of the n ° 58 ?

Laverty also sends by the "little blue bird" his sincere congratulations to the phenomenal Sam Lowes, winner of a me-movable race in the Supersport category (to relive the SSP race, read).

"@ SamLowes11: Great job Sam, I’ve never been able to win four races in a row, but hey, I’ve never been a champion either. You are on the right path", assured the vice-world champion of Supersport and .

For the record, Eugene had aligned in 2010 three consecutive victories and had won eight races out of the thirteen that counted this season. Despite this, the title had eluded him, Kenan Sofuoglu – with three wins and thirteen podiums – accumulating 11 more points at the end of the year…

However, it seems that the "warned" has not quite learned the lesson! "Interesting", noted Monday n ° 58:"I got the same number of points in Donington and Portimao, despite the DNF ("Did Not Finish", Editor’s note). Victories earn big points".

In the "classification" of the number of victories this season precisely, the official Aprilia rider is in the lead with four victories on the clock, against three for the Kawasaki Sykes rider, two for the BMW riders Melandri and Davies, and one for his teammate Guintoli. But for now, it is our national Sylvain who dominates the championship !

The Ninja Sykes defeated by Ippon

As we underlined in the introduction, the Portuguese event was not tender with some "top" drivers … Besides Leon Camier – who will not play for the title in 2013 but has the capacity to climb on the podium -, Tom Sykes also inherited a "bubble" in the second round.

Already last year, Portimao had brought bad luck: after leading him to victory at noon, his ZX-10R had let go in the second race. This year at least Tom has planted himself like a big acorn !

Thrown to the mat by a vibrator stronger than him during the formation lap, the English Ninja did everything to stay in the race and glean even a point, as if it were the very one who had missed him last year to crown the world crown !

The task promised to be tough: the No.66 Greens had to start from the pit lane – instead of his hard-won pole position – and made two stops during the race, carefully avoiding entering his box – which is equivalent to abandonment…

Author of the best time of the second round, Tom Sykes was finally unable to cover the minimum distance in the race (75%) and does not even officially finish in 17th place: his "NC" status means that he is just not classified…

His superb series of eight (!) Podiums is therefore interrupted in Portugal, but Tom chooses to be positive: after all, the current second in has only this blunder to regret over all of the first twelve races of this season..

This is an excellent provisional record for the man whom Site affectionately nicknamed "Mister On-Off" a couple of years ago, aka "Tom casts or casse"…

Pirelli sorry for Melandri

Marco Melandri was not more polished Sunday afternoon: victim of a technical problem – him too! -, the famous n ° 33 could only take a distant 12th place and its four corresponding points in the second round.

After praising the riders’ performances and congratulating himself on the progress made by his tires in recent months, Giorgio Barbier (director of Pirelli’s motorcycle competition division) allowed himself a "small parenthesis related to what happened to Marco Melandri in race 2".

"At present", declared last night the person in charge – but not guilty? – Italian,"we can only make an objective assessment, based on what the pilot has told us. The tire clearly showed abnormal signs of wear and Marco said he felt strong vibrations from the second lap.", he admits.

"No one has yet been able to determine whether the vibrations are coming from the tire or other factors, but both Pirelli and his team, BMW Motorrad GoldB and SBK, we are committed to finding the reasons for this problem.", assures Giorgio Barbier.

To do this, the semi-official BMW team provided the sole (!) Tire supplier with the tire in question, "still mounted on the rim", specifies Pirelli, so that the transalpine engineers carry out the battery of tests necessary to the elucidation of this mystery of rubber balls…

One thing is already certain: "Whatever the nature of the problem, related to a tire defect or due to other external factors, we are sorry for Marco who had a very good first race and who could undoubtedly have fought for a place on the podium of the second"… Mamma mia !

Guintoli takes advantage

Finally, the big "winner" of this weekend is none other than Sylvain Guintoli! Arriving in Portimao, the Frenchie was only four points ahead of his runner-up Tom Sykes. He leaves with 20 more, the satisfaction of his duty as a bonus !

While some – Site readers ?! – reproached him for a lack of aggressiveness in the race, "Guinters" demonstrated this Sunday that he had big bollocks guts and that he knew, when the time came, "to get them out" !

Aprilia’s No.50 took out the big attack early in the first set to be sure not to let his opponents slip away, and didn’t panic when his teammate and then Melandri took turns in first place shortly before the halfway point.

Laverty out of the race, Sylvain remained unperturbed, taking the time to observe his rivals and in turn taking the lead four laps from the end. If his "Jacque Attack" at the very end of the course was not rewarded, it is obvious that the maneuver was enough to nail the beak to his detractors !

Outpaced by Marco at the finish line by "seven times nothing" – compared to the nothing that separated Sykes from Laverty in Superpole! -, the leader of the championship had absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. Laverty having gone like a rocket in the second round, Guintoli would have been wrong to risk the fault to catch him…

Wiser than in the first round, the Anglo-Drôme pilot still pushed enough at the controls of his official Aprilia RSV4 to overtake Jonathan Rea and collect four additional points. Well done, Guinto !

Another pilot who never stops "pushing", and pushing again, is Jules Cluzel! Author of two new Top 10 this Sunday in Portugal, the Suzuki rider remains in 10th place in the general classification, 7 points behind Davide Giugliano…

Finally, the other seed – French – of champion planted in the circuit for just a year is called Loris Baz. In Portugal, the "Green Giant" has added two Top 5s to his very recent collection and he is rightly pleased to climb up on Chaz Davies in the general classification: the former JCO colt has 119 points, against 133 for the Welshman..

On the track, the 20-year-old and his ZX-10R not only beat the and his S1000RR, but they also defeated big names in the World Superbike such as Michel Fabrizio on his private Aprilia and Carlos Checa on his Ducati. . deprived of good results.

Like the Bologna proto in, Ducati’s production sports car is struggling to keep pace in World Superbike. But the Alstare team is working hard to change that … And this weekend it seems – at least everyone is hoping so! – that we have witnessed the return of the champion…

No, Site does not refer here to Max Biaggi’s freelance at Mugello on the Ducati Desmosedici (read). The champion in question is Carlos Checa, titled in 2011 on the 1198 … whom he no doubt regrets !

Riding his replacement, the Panigale 1199 R, the Spaniard obtained an encouraging sixth place on Sunday. "This day has been positive", concluded Sunday evening the charismatic and courageous Francis Batta, head of the Alstare team..

"The result of the second race shows us that Carlos’ physical condition has improved thanks to the physiotherapy sessions he has followed both in Barcelona and at the Clinica Mobile.". Checa points out himself: the progress does not come only from his shoulder, but also from his mount. !

"The bike responds correctly to recent developments and we will continue to work tirelessly to reach the podium.", confirms" Mister "Batta. As done on purpose, the is scheduled in three weeks on the Imola circuit in Italy. To be continued on MNC: stay tuned !

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