Nearly two months after the start of the championship in Phillip Island, the second round of the World Superbikes got properly underway in Aragon today with the first race, which was by all means quite bizarre.
|Make no mistake, Davies worked for this win.
Eugene Laverty took the hole shot and turned this into an early lead, followed by Tom Sykes and a very
hungry looking Chaz Davies, who didn’t wait long to make a move on Sykes into the hairpin at the end of the back straight on lap 2 however his stint in second didn’t last long as the Huddersfield man shot straight back past him into turn 1. This little battle allowed Frenchman Sylvain Guintoli to close in on the pair.
Having been shown Chaz Davies’ BMW was right on him, Sykes upped his game on lap three posting his fastest lap of the race closing right up on leader Laverty. However shortly afterwards the Northern Irishman sat up and pulled out of the race with a technical issue leaving Sykes in the lead from Davies and Guintoli. Meanwhile Marco Melandri, who started 8th on the grid after a disastrous superpole had been fighting through the pack, he took fourth on the fourth lap from Rea, Baz and Cluzel.
The bizarrest thing was to happen next, the curse of the Aragon race leader struck again, not even a lap after Eugene Laverty had pulled out of the race on his Aprilia RSV4 with a technical issue – Tom Sykes sat up from the lead and did the same – he too had suffered a technical problem with his Kawasaki. This odd turn of events left Davies in the lead from Guintoli with Melandri 4 seconds behind.
Davies began to stretch a gap immediately, Guintoli was trying hard and had a massive moment on lap 8. Davide Giugliano started fighting through the pack from 8th on the 9th lap. At the halfway point Davies was 3 seconds ahead of Guintoli and his team mate Melandri was closing on on the Frenchman in second. It took the Italian until lap 13 to get past Guintoli’s Aprilia at the “corkscrew” section of the Motorland Aragon circuit. Giugliano managed to put himself in 4th also on lap 13, fighting with Rea and Loris Baz. This then became third when second place Melandri went straight on at the chicane, rejoining in 5th.
With three laps to go, Chaz Davies led by nearly 9 seconds as his team mate Melandri is desperately trying to make up for positions lost in his costly mistake a few laps earlier. He passed Jonathan Rea for 4th with 3 to go and the next lap he took third from Aprilia’s Giugliano. It looked like Melandri could close in Guintoli, however the Frenchman responded on the last few laps to secure second place. Davide Giugliano, who despite efforts from Jonathan Rea was looking comfortable in fourth until he ran out of fuel on the last lap.
RT. Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) Kawasaki ZX-10R 10’02.121