Aprilia rider Sylvain Guintoli leaves Imola no longer top of the pile in the World Championship standings, but in second place after an engine blow up put the Frenchman out of race one. His second position could well have come under fire also, from his team mate Eugene Laverty, had the Irishman not suffered a crash and Guintoli managing a decent 3rd position in the second race.
|A single trophy in Imola for Guinters
Photo: Aprilia Racing
Guintoli, similarly to his team mate, had been struggling with setup all weekend and was unable to keep up with the likes of Rea and Sykes up the top of the time sheets. However, the ‘honourary Englishman’ found more pace in Superpole but ended up off the front row in fourth as a result of a mistake in the final sector on his fastest lap.
Race one was over before it had fully started for Guintoli, as his engine blew on lap six putting an end to his race, whilst he was battling for second place with eventual winner, Tom Sykes.
The second race of the day was far better but rather boring for Guintoli following the front end crash for his team mate Laverty; the Frenchman ran a lonely third place to the flag, salvaging 16 points overall from the weekend, not a disaster by any means in the overall championship outlook. “Race 1 was disappointing. Unfortunately at these levels these things can happen. In Race 2 I really pushed as hard as I could. When Eugene crashed I even tried to catch Rea who was in front of me, but I wasn’t able to. I’m not really happy with third place, but it was really the most we could get today. The season is still far from over. There are tracks like this one and Donington where we’re weaker, but there are others where we will definitely be key players. The important thing is never to fall too far behind the leaders”.