WSBK – World Superbike riders’ statements at Phillip Island – WSBK Round 2 statements

World Superbike riders’ statements at Phillip Island

WSBK - Statements from World Superbike riders at Phillip Island - Statements from WSBK Round 2

The first event of the 2016 World SBK took place this weekend in Phillip Island, Australia. To complete our near-live reports, here are the statements of the Superbike riders at the end of their two Australian races.

WSBK Round 2 Statements

Jonathan Rea, 1st:
"It’s incredible. We did two really cool races this weekend. I just did my job, being very patient at the start of each race. I knew Chaz was going to attempt a maneuver again today, cut and paste from the day before, but he attacked when there was no space, he widened completely and, unfortunately for him, committed a mistake. The settings changes made between yesterday and today made my bike fairly easy to ride and better equipped for attacks. Not just in Sector 4, but in many places. I thank my team for this. We fought a strategic battle here on Phillip Island and it really paid off. I think we are exploiting around 85-90% of the machine’s potential and I am really proud to give Kawasaki these two victories on the new bike.".

Michael van den Mark, 2nd:
"I got off to a good start and found myself behind Tom and Johnny. All I wanted at first was to save the tires, so I left them in front. When Tom made his mistake I moved up to second and the pace immediately improved significantly. I didn’t want to lead but got out of the last corner very well and passed Rea on the straight. I just tried to make my race in the lead, but I saw on the big screen at Turn 10 that the group was really big, so I tried to break that down a bit by attacking. It worked, but I knew the last two laps would be difficult for me. I managed to hold on when Johnny and Chaz passed me, I wasn’t really afraid to see them go. Chaz tried a few maneuvers to take command and the last one didn’t go well. I tried to stay as close to Jonathan as possible, but I made a small mistake, he didn’t, mass was said. To finish second today is awesome, it has been a great weekend and the team has done an amazing job improving the bike. We couldn’t have started the season better".

Davide Giugliano, 3rd:
"I had a little more trouble today with the heat, it made us lose grip. I was expecting that, so I kept some headroom for the last few laps, but I lost some ground touching Sykes. Still, I continued to attack and I’m really happy with the end result. This podium is the result of hard work together, I think the team contributed 60% and I did the rest. I dedicate this podium to my family, who supported me during the most difficult times. I also want to thank Ducati, who helps me improve professionally. I only want to focus on the present and the future".

Nicky Hayden, 4th:
"I have to thank the team because the bike was much better today. Saturday was very useful for us because we learned a lot about the tuning of the bike, in order to make us more endurance. We were even faster than yesterday and that was a good sign. I enjoyed the race, although I wasn’t quite fast enough to fight for the front. In the last lap I knew Giugliano was there and tried to protect my position by entering Lukey Heights. I then missed the trajectory a bit between turn 10 and 11. He fired back and went ahead. I wanted to open the throttle, but all I got was the traction control cutoff. I should have lowered the traction control more in the last two laps. I’m obviously a little disappointed not to be on the podium this time, it would have been great to celebrate my first event. However, I’m happy to see how competitive the bike is. We learned a lot here at Phillip Island and now I can’t wait to visit Thailand"

Sylvain Guintoli, 5th:
"It’s a very solid weekend for us and a good start to the season here at Phillip Island. Obviously, there was a lot of anticipation due to the hype of Yamaha’s comeback with the new YZF-R1 in the Superbike World Championship. But in reality we are still at the very beginning of the project. As we said when introducing the team a month ago, it’s going to take a while to be able to win races. Having said that, we have been a lot more competitive here than I expected! We were able to show very good strengths, and also to highlight the points that we need to continue to improve. The data and experience gathered here will therefore be very valuable for us riders, for the team and for Yamaha. We’ve been so close to the podium and the victory – three seconds in the first race and two seconds in the second – so we’re going to integrate all of that and continue to improve all the gear without extracting the DNA from the bike. Our first event really represents a very good base, a very good start to the campaign, so we’ll just keep working and aim for Thailand in two weeks.".

Tom Sykes, 6th:
"We ran to the threshold at Phillip Island. In the second run, I felt really comfortable until the tenth lap. I struggled to downshift when entering the pin. I missed a speed and went off the track. Unfortunately, I lost 1.6 seconds on this lap. A few loops later Giugliano and I got into a fight and again I let 1.6 seconds go. In the end, we had made a couple of small changes to the bike today and I felt much, much more comfortable. Unfortunately in the race, I did not find myself in the right place in the last five laps of the race. I am satisfied with the progress made. I have never been super good here, not knowing why, even though I love this place"

Jordi Torres, 7th:
"I had a problem initially and realized that we still had work to do. In the end, I was able to find a good pace in the race. Once I got past the traffic at the start, I was able to ride as I wanted. I felt comfortable on the bike, I gained confidence and tried to get back to the front lines but I did not succeed. I am still satisfied, because we have gathered a lot of information and we are starting to understand how to prepare for the race. I’m happy the next round is in Thailand as I really enjoyed riding there last year. The people are wonderful there and the show is guaranteed".

Sylvain Barrier, 15th:
"I admit that this circuit has never given me great satisfaction. So I believe that the two points scored in the championship should be considered valuable. I want to keep the bright side and I have to say that these two races at Phillip Island have given me confidence in both the bike and the changes to the race format. I also have to remind everyone that it was a long time since I last competed in races because of an accident. I have now regained all my motivation and the will to fight, to go fast. We will talk about it again in Thailand".

Mathhieu BRETILLE – Photos DR

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