WSS: Sofuoglu dominates at interrupted Imola

Mahi Racing’s Kenan Sofuoglu won his second race of 2013 in dominant style in Italy this afternoon in a World Supersport race full of drama, following a red flag being waved on the just the sixth lap 19 meaning a

Sofuoglu pulled four points on Lowes in the championship

Photo: KRT

a race restart for the 30 riders under the scorching Italian sun.

Britain’s Sam Lowes started on pole and got a scorching start into turn onw, but it was Sofuoglu who stole the lead through Rivazza one and began to pull away from the championship leader. Leaving Lowes behind, the Turk seemed to have a fast pace on his Kawasaki and was setting fastest laps after fastest laps. It was Valentine Debises’ Prorace Honda that caused the race to be stopped after he left oil on the track as his bike began to produce flames. It wasn’t until front runners met the oil that the decision to stop the race was made following a many near misses and a crash for wild card Brit Tommy Bridewell.
 Following Sofuoglu’s scorching pace in the ‘first’ race, the reigning champion started on pole position ahead of Sam Lowes and Riccardo Russo rounding out the front row. As the lights went out it wasn’t Lowes that got the rocket start he needed but his Yakhnich Motorsport team-mate Vladimir Leonov who stormed from sixth position into the top three behind Sofuoglu and Scassa in the opening corner. Championship leader Lowes had an awful start and was down in seventh on the opening lap. With the front four breaking away it looked as if a podium unlikely for the Brit as he slipped down to 10th position. However, Lowes was re-grouped and rode a mature and composed race seeming to get into a fast rhythm, bridging the gap to the leading group by lap six after passing a string of Kawaski’s and setting fastest laps.
Irish rookie Jack Kennedy was running a positive race on his Rivamoto Honda, sitting in 13th position by the fourth lap, at a track he has never visited. By lap six Lowes was ahead of fellow Brit Kev Coghlan in sixth position, setting the fastest lap of the race with a 1.51.738 and right on Luca Scassa’s tail in fifth. By lap eight it was clear that it was Sofuoglu’s race to lose having pulled out a lead of over two seconds. Lowes was still on the hunt and had passed Lorenzo Zanetti on lap 8 of 14 for third position at the final chicane, a favored passing point of the Lincoln rider. With just six laps remaining Lowes had a 3.7s gap to pull to his team-mate Leonov in second, which would mean Sofuoglu would only pull four points on the Brit. 
Not only was there an exciting battle for the last two steps on the podium, further down the field Luca Scassa, Andrea Antonelli and Fabien Foret were locked in a fight for sixth position with Antonelli almost high-siding not once but twice off his Team Goeleven Kawasaki. However this battle was short lived when Foret made a mistake on lap 12 resulting in the French-man running on in Italy. Lowes showed his steely determination in the closing laps and even though he didn’t seem close enough at the start of lap 12, he finally made his move on his Russian team-mate in the Variante Bassa final chicane, securing a second position on the podium. This impressive result means Sofugolu is still 34 points behind Lowes in the championship standings. 
Times below: 

1. Kenan Sofuoglu (MAHI Racing Team India) Kawasaki ZX-6R 26’11.297
2. Sam Lowes (Yakhnich Motorsport) Yamaha YZF R6 26’15.254
3. Vladimir Leonov (Yakhnich Motorsport) Yamaha YZF R6 26’15.706
4. Lorenzo Zanetti (Pata Honda World Supersport) Honda CBR600RR 26’17.732
5. Michael Vd Mark (Pata Honda World Supersport) Honda CBR600RR 26’21.264
6. Luca Scassa (Kawasaki Intermoto Ponyexpres) Kawasaki ZX-6R 26’24.734
7. Andrea Antonelli (Team Goeleven) Kawasaki ZX-6R 26’25.409
8. Florian Marino (Kawasaki Intermoto Ponyexpres) Kawasaki ZX-6R 26’39.491
9. Alex Baldolini (Suriano Racing Team) Suzuki GSX-R600 26’40.315
10. Sheridan Morais (PTR Honda) Honda CBR600RR 26’40.434
11. Raffaele De Rosa (Team Lorini) Honda CBR600RR 26’40.889
12. Fabien Foret (MAHI Racing Team India) Kawasaki ZX-6R 26’41.060
13. Jack Kennedy (Rivamoto) Honda CBR600RR 26’41.254
14. Roberto Rolfo (ParkinGo MV Agusta Corse) MV Agusta F3 675 26’42.128
15. Fabio Menghi (VFT Racing) Yamaha YZF R6 26’51.199
16. Balazs Nemeth (Complus SMS Racing) Honda CBR600RR 27’00.729
17. Imre Toth (Racing Team Toth) Honda CBR600RR 27’09.429
18. Massimo Roccoli (Team Pata by Martini) Yamaha YZF R6 27’10.825
19. Mitchell Carr (AARK Racing) Triumph 675 R 27’12.051
20. Alex Schacht (Racing Team Toth) Honda CBR600RR 27’12.379
21. Nacho Calero Perez (Honda PTR) Honda CBR600RR 27’12.631
22. Yves Polzer (Team MRC Austria) Honda CBR600RR 27’33.569
23. Eduard Blokhin (Rivamoto) Honda CBR600RR 26’35.316
RT. Kev Coghlan (Kawasaki DMC-Lorenzini Team) Kawasaki ZX-6R 16’57.615
RT. Riccardo Russo (Puccetti Racing Kawasaki) Kawasaki ZX-6R 15’11.824
RT. David Linortner (Team Honda PTR) Honda CBR600RR 13’26.533
RT. Mathew Scholtz (Suriano Racing Team) Suzuki GSX-R600 9’35.149
RT. Fabrizio Lai (Speedy Bike) Honda CBR600RR 5’49.772
RT. Christopher Moretti (Bike Service) Yamaha YZF R6 2’03.428
NS. Marco Faccani (Evan Bros R. by S.M.A. Honda I) Honda CBR600RR 
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