World Superbike results from Phillip Island 2010
The 2010 opening World Superbike round at Phillip Island has thrown up a few surprises.
Briton Leon Haslam has only just held off Italian Michel Fabrizio in the closet ever finish in the opening 2010 World Superbike round held at Phillip Island.
Haslam, who started from pole position, was stalked all the way by Fabrizio and Japan’s Noriyuki Haga (Ducati), but was seemingly on track for a flawless victory before running wide at Turn 10 on the final lap. That intensified the battle between him and Fabrizio, but the 26-year-old managed to hold on and win by the barest margin in world superbike history – 0.004secs.
Previously, the closest finish was Carl Fogarty’s 0.005sec victory over Colin Edwards at the Italian circuit of Monza in 1999. Haslam is now the 10th Briton to win a WSBK race, and it was Suzuki’s first victory since 2008. Haga, who was racing under some duress after a high speed crash in this morning’s warm-up session, completed the 22-lapper in third, with Honda’s Jonathan Rea (Honda) coming out on top of a pulsating multi-rider scrum for fourth position ahead of Max Biaggi (Aprilia), Sylvain Guintoli (Suzuki) and Carlos Checa (Ducati).
Troy Corser was a solid ninth on his BMW, with fellow Australians Andrew Pitt (BMW) and Josh Brookes (Honda) 15th and 19th respectively. Queenslander Chris Vermeulen crashed out of the race on lap four after losing the front-end of his Kawasaki at Turn Four. Other riders to hit the ground included Yamaha duo James Toseland and Cal Crutchlow, with the former suffering a nasty highside at Turn Nine.
Carlos Checa has become the first privateer to win a world superbike race since 2008 with a vintage performance on his Ducati in race two at Phillip Island. The Spaniard timed his run to perfection, passing race one winner Leon Haslam with only two corners to go, and then valiantly holding off his rival to the chequered flag.
Ducati’s Michel Fabrizio was a close third from Suzuki’s Sylvain Guintoli in another signature Phillip Island close finish, while Troy Corser was the best of the Australians with a seventh on the BMW. Queenslander Chris Vermeulen (Kawasaki) wasn’t so fortunate, crashing hard at Turn Nine and bruising his left hip. He also fell off in race one.
The victory was Checa’s third in WSBK since he switched over to the production bike-based championship in 2008. After a slow start from the front row of the grid, Checa finally joined the front-running quartet of Haslam, Fabrizio, Noriyuki Haga (Ducati) and Guintoli about half race distance, and from there it was a matter of jockeying for position in preparation for the final frantic run home. Haga eventually dropped off the pace to finish fifth, and just 0.837secs separated the top four at the end of the 22-lapper.
Jonathan Rea (Honda) was sixth, forced to slice his way back through the pack after running off at Turn Four on lap one, with Max Biaggi (Aprilia) finishing behind Corser in eighth. Australians Josh Brookes (Honda) and Andrew Pitt (BMW) were 14th and 15th. After round one of 13, Haslam leads the championship on 45pts from Fabrizio (36), Checa (34), Haga (27), Guintoli (23) and Rea (23). Corser is eighth on 16pts, while Vermeulen faled to score any points.
Round Two will be held in Portugal on March 28.
WORLD SUPERBIKE – RACE 1
1 Leon Haslam (91) – GBR (Suzuki)
2 Michel Fabrizio (84) – Italy (Ducati) .004s
3 Nori Haga (41) – Japan (Ducati) .769s
4 Jonathan Rea (65)- GBR (Honda) 10.2s
5 Max Biaggi (3) – Italy (Aprilia) 10.7s
6 Sylvain Guintoli (50) – France (Suzuki) 11.0s
7 Carlos Checa (7)- Spain (Ducati) 11.2s
8 Jakub Smrz (96) – Czech Rep (Ducati) 16.5s
9 Troy Corser (11) – Australia (BMW) 20.2s
10 Lorenzo Lanzi (57) – Italy (Ducati) 26.3s
15 Andrew Pitt (88) – Aus (BMW) 55.0s
19 Josh Brookes (25) – Australia (Honda) 6 laps
Chris Vermeulen (77) Kawasaki – crashed lap 4
WORLD SUPERBIKE – RACE 2
1 Carlos Checa (7)- Spain (Ducati)
2 Leon Haslam (91) – GBR (Suzuki) .307
3 Michel Fabrizio (84) – Italy (Ducati) .434
4 Sylvain Guintoli (50) – France (Suzuki) .837
5. Nori Haga (41) – Japan (Ducati) 3.45s
6 Jonathan Rea (65)- GBR (Honda) 11.53
7 Troy Corser (11) – Australia (BMW) 12.02
8 Max Biaggi (3) – Italy (Aprilia) 13.06
9 Cal Crutchlow (35) GBR (Yamaha) 14.40
10 James Toseland (52) GBR (Yamahs) 14.70
14 Josh Brookes (25) – Australia (Honda) 30.94
15 Andrew Pitt (88) – Aus (BMW) 41.85
Chris Vermeulen (77) Kawasaki – crashed lap 9
World superbike – CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS AFTER ROUND ONE
1 Leon Haslam 45 points
2 Michel Fabrizio 36 points
3 Carlos Checa 34 points
4 Nor Haga 27 points
5 Sylvain Guintoli 23 points
6 Jonathan Rea 23 points
7 Max Biaggi 19 points
8 Troy Corser 16 points
9 Leon Camier 10 points
10 Lorenzo Lanzi 9 points
Points for other Australians
17 Josh Brookes 2 points
18 Andrew Pitt 2 points
19 Chris Vermeulen Nil