WSBK: Biaggi Breaks Foot, Checa Stretches Lead

PAR Cycle CanadaPosted on

Carlos Checa extended his championship lead at the Nurburgring in Germany on Sunday, by winning race one and hanging on to finish a treacherously wet, crash plagued, race two, while his rival and defending World Superbike champion Max Biaggi was sidelined with a broken foot. Biaggi managed to qualify on the front row after suffering the injury during practice on Friday — apparently he was hit by a flying rock — but ultimately was unable to race. 

Checa, starting once again on pole, traded the lead back and forth with Noriyuki Haga (PATA Racing Team Aprilia) during the early stages of race one, with Yamaha team-mates Marco Melandri and Eugene Laverty dicing for third just behind them. But by lap six Checa had the lead and Melandri was able to go around Haga for second. The Italian though would not be able mount a serious attack on the front running Althea Ducati rider, as Melandri ran wide the next time around, allowing Haga and Laverty to get by. Melandri eventually fought his way back into second, but ran out of time to reel in Checa, crossing the finish line almost two seconds adrift of the Spaniard. Haga finished third, Laverty fourth, and BMW’s Leon Haslam, fifth.

The skies opened up for race two at the Nurburgring, creating a crash-filled shortened event that saw PBR Kawasaki rider Tom Sykes take his first-ever WSBK victory. Noriyuki Haga led from lap one onward to open up an eight second lead, but crashed out in treacherously sodden conditions on lap 8 and gifted Sykes the lead, which he held until the race was finally red flagged with six laps remaining. Effenbert-Liberty Ducati team-mates Sylvain Guintoli and Jakub Smrz were awarded second and third place respectively, while race one winner Carlos Checa finished a conservative eighth. Marco Melandri placed sixth, but Checa still gained the most points in the round, increasing his season total to 376. Melandri meanwhile leapfrogged over the injured Biaggi into second overall, 74 points adrift of Checa.

Many racers lashed out at race officials for running race 2 in such horrible conditions for as long as they did (see video footage below). Leon Camier, Leon Haslam, Jonathan Rea, James Toseland, Mark Aitchinson, Makoto Tamada and the unlucky race leader Noriyuki Haga all crashed out (although Haslam and Rea were able to rejoin). Melandri was particularly vocal about his displeasure, speaking after the race during an interview on Italian television he said, “They treated us like idiots, they were criminals. When it stopped raining they red flagged the race, only because 75% of the race was completed and by then the track was becoming pretty good and the critical moment was over. It’s not right, ruining the races like this. Shit, when Eugene [Laverty] and I started to complain … and I think others also complained… it should have been stopped and then re-started, we knew that it wouldn’t have rained that hard all day.”

The next race takes place September 24 at Imola.

2011 Nurburgring World Superbike Race 1 Results

1 Carlos Checa Althea Racing Ducati

2 Marco Melandri Yamaha WSBK Team +1.855

3 Noriyuki Haga PATA Racing Team Aprilia +2.322

4 Eugene Laverty Yamaha WSBK Team +7.789

5 Leon Haslam BMW Motorrad +9.727

6 Sylvain Guintoli Team Effenbert-Liberty Ducati +10.113

7 Joan Lascorz Paul Bird Racing Kawasaki +17.226

8 Leon Camier Aprilia Alitalia Racing Team +17.228

9 Ayrton Badovini BMW Motorrad Italia +18.166

10    Jonathan Rea Castrol Honda +19.457

11 Tom Sykes Paul Bird Racing Kawasaki +22.136

12 Mark Aitchison Team Pedericini Kawaski +25.346

13 James Toseland BMW Motorrad Italia +31.617

14 Roberto Rolfo Team Pedericini Kawaski +31.796

15 Troy Corser BMW Motorrad +33.320

16 Michel Fabrizio Team Suzuki Alstare +38.149

17 Makoto Tamada Castrol Honda +1:16.143

DNF

Jakub Smrz Team Effenbert-Liberty Ducati 8 Laps

Maxime Berger Supersonic Racing Ducati 16 Laps

DNS 

Max Biaggi Aprilia Alitalia Racing Team

2011 Nurburgring World Superbike Race 2 Results

1 Tom Sykes Paul Bird Racing Kawasaki

2 Sylvain Guintoli Team Effenbert-Liberty Ducati +4.063

3 Jakub Smrz Team Effenbert-Liberty Ducati +22.759

4 Jonathan Rea Castrol Honda +28.497

5 Eugene Laverty Yamaha WSBK Team +38.374

6 Marco Melandri Yamaha WSBK Team +45.326

7 Ayrton Badovini BMW Motorrad Italia +47.030

8 Carlos Checa Althea Racing Ducati +50.032

9 Leon Haslam BMW Motorrad +53.586

10 Maxime Berger Supersonic Racing Ducati +55.261

11 Joan Lascorz Paul Bird Racing Kawasaki +1:12.805

12 Troy Corser BMW Motorrad +1:15.468

13 Roberto Rolfo Team Pedericini Kawaski +1:40.323

DNF

41 Noriyuki Haga PATA Racing Team Aprilia 1 Lap

100 Makado Tamada Castrol Honda 1 Lap

2 Leon Camier Aprilia Alitalia Racing Team 2 Laps

8 Mark Aitchison Team Pedericini Kawaski 3 Laps

52 James Toseland BMW Motorrad Italia 5 Laps

84 Michel Fabrizio Team Suzuki Alstare 8 Laps

DNS 

Max Biaggi Aprilia Alitalia Racing Team

2011 WSBK Standings

1. Carlos Checa Ducati 376

2. Marco Melandri Yamaha 302

3. Max Biaggi Aprilia 281

4. Eugene Laverty Yamaha 232

5. Leon Haslam BMW 176

6. Leon Camier Aprilia 154

7. Michel Fabrizio Suzuki 141

8. Sylvain Guintoli Ducati 139

9. Ayrton Badovini BMW 134

10. Noriyuki Haga Aprilia 115

11. Tom Sykes Kawasaki 114

12. Jonathan Rea Honda 113

13. Joan Lascorz Kawasaki 111

14. Jakub Smrz Ducati 109

15. Troy Corser BMW 67

16. Ruben Xaus Honda 44

17. Maxime Berger Ducati 42

18. Roberto Rolfo Kawasaki 39

19. Mark Aitchison Kawasaki 24

20. John Hopkins Suzuki 20

21. Chris Vermeulen Kawasaki 14

22. James Toseland BMW 13

23. Lorenzo Lanzi BMW 10

24. Joshua Waters Suzuki 8

25. Matteo Baiocco Ducati 4

26. Alessandro Polita Ducati 3

27. Barry Veneman BMW 3

28. Jon Kirkham Suzuki 3

29. Viktor Kispataki Honda 1

30. Alex Lowes Honda 1

31. Fabrizio Lai Honda 1 

32. Bryan Staring Kawasaki 1

 

 

 

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