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Philip Island WSB Results (Both Race 1 and Race 2)

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Kawasaki’s defending champion Jonathan Rea won both races of the opening WSB round at Phillip Island this weekend. At a track that doesn’t necessarily favor the “Green Team”, Rea served notice that this could be a difficult year for his adversaries.

Saturday’s Race 1 saw a tight group at the front until the mid-way point, when a gap appeared sending several riders, including Honda’s Nicky Hayden, backwards. At the end, a close scrap between Rea and Ducati’s Chaz Davies ended with Davies taking a close second, and Honda’s Michael van der Mark finishing third.

Sunday’s Race 2 again saw Rea take the victory after Davies low-sided near the end, allowing van der Mark to grab second place ahead of Ducati’s Davide Giugliano.

For American fans wondering about the performance of Nicky Hayden, he had mixed results on the weekend, but showed competitive speed. Hayden ran in the front group both days, but faded mid-way through Race 1 as a result of front tire wear. During Race 2, Hayden again ran up front, but finished much closer to the winner and nearly took the final podium spot. Overall, it appears Hayden will be in the mix at the front this year, particularly at tracks where tire wear is less of an issue (which would be most tracks compared to Phillip Island).

Here are links to complete race results:

Results – Phillip Island Superbike Race 1

Results – Phillip Island Superbike Race 2

 

 


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42 Comments

  1. Auphliam says:

    The finish to the Saturday race was thrilling. Davies was stalking, and you knew a move was coming…you just didn’t know when. For Rea to come right back around him like he did was pretty impressive.

  2. Brinskee says:

    Great to see Nicky back in the lead pack. Too bad about the front tire on race one, and it seems like traction control was giving him issues in race two. Like others have said, I’d like to see him ride with the electronics turned way down to let him steer with the rear a bit more, as long as the rear tires can handle it.

    In any case it’s interesting to see how quickly he’s adapted to the Honda. His teammate van der Mark has had an entire previous season to get to grips with the bike and Hayden isn’t far down on his times. I think with a few more races he’ll have the bike dialed in and be very competitive with him and hopefully the rest of the field.

    Looking forward to Thailand to see how well Hayden and the bike adapts to a track that doesn’t suit the Honda. This will be a better picture for how the season should unfold.

  3. stinkywheels says:

    I wish he was on a Ducati. I’d like to see him and them do better.

  4. mickey says:

    Good for Hayden, nice to hear he’s running well. I’m not afraid to eat crow (did it with Rossi when he returned to Yamaha from Ducati) and willing to do it with Hayden as well. Let’s see how he does over the length of the season. If he finishes 4th or better overall I will get the black bird,and the knife and fork out. I hear they are better with a little ketchup.

    • VLJ says:

      Fourth overall is probably the ceiling for the Hondas. They aren’t going to beat the two Kawis, and Davies on the Ducati likely finishes third. Guintoli on the Yamaha could also pose a serious threat.

      It’s the old adage again, “First you have to beat your teammmate.” In order to finish fourth overall, Nicky probably has to beat VdM. Could he then finish as the first non-Kawi? Probably not, at least not in a straight fight, but with the help of some timely DNFs by the others, perhaps.

    • jimmihaffa says:

      Save me a wing, Mickey. I’ve been a bit of a Nicky skeptic too. It would be nice to see him override his machinery for a change. While the Honda platform may not bring the team a championship, if Nicky finishes ahead of some of the WSB vets I would happily eat crow too.

    • TexinOhio says:

      Well sounds like he wasn’t happy with how much TC was kicking it during race 2. I’d like to find out what he did or could do testing the Honda with the electronics turned way way down. I know all the electrics make the bikes “easier” and smoother to ride over all, but Hayden’s a dirt track dude.

      I know it’s not fashionable to back a bike in anymore but give Hayden full control of the bike to see what he and it can do.

      One of the main things I dislike about GP is all the rider aides.

      A rider like say Lorenzo can deal well with the rider aides as it fits his way of riding.

      Nicky’s style has always seemed to me to be like he’d be great at breaking a wild horse and treating a bike as such would seem to work for him.

      • Jeremy in TX says:

        I think one of Hayden’s problems as a rider is that he never seemed to adapt as well to the electronics as some of his competitors. With rear grip being an issue in the race, I don’t think Hayden sliding around would have helped his cause much. I agree that it would be an interesting experiment, though.

      • mickey says:

        which is exactly why Nicky did not fare well on the 800s in MotoGP in 07-08. The 800’s were designed and meant to be ridden like 250’s with smooth lines and high corner speeds using the electronics to keep from pitching you on your head. It was not Nicky’s riding style, and he did not do well with it…obviously.

  5. Provologna says:

    Might be a loooong season for riders not named Rea and Sykes…

  6. duclvr says:

    Nice to see Nicky in the lead pack and a podium threat already.

  7. PABLO says:

    Im amazed that the Honda is competitive with the rest of the field given that they are using a engine, frame and swing arm from a 2008 Blade! I realise they race the “SP” version which has slightly more power ( new head in 2014 and matched for wight pistons) and quality Ohlinhs suspension. But shouldn’t they have a large power deficit compared to the rest of the field?
    Don’t the evo rules mean there are very limited changes they can make to the bike?

    • PatrickD says:

      The flowing nature of Philip Island would not highlight Honda’s previously known shortcomings, which was coming out of slow-speed corners and accelerating through the gears.

      • Ricky Crue says:

        Exactly, I’ve already had that discussion with several people.

      • mickey says:

        the same issue Yamaha had last year (that everyone complained about) in MotoGP, yet they managed to finish first and second in the standings.

        The quickest time around the whole track wins the race.

        • Dave says:

          Yamaha’s engine/electronics strength in MotoGP was coming off the turns. Their weakness was top-end speed compared to Ducati and Honda.

          Looks like Honda must now figure out the tire wear situation, which was what Kawasaki did to make the current platform competitive (how many times did Sykes earn pole and finish 5th?).

          • mickey says:

            Exactly..accelerating thru the gears the Hondas and Ducatis would walk all over the Yamahas leaving them catching up at the end of a long straightaway, yet the podium was filled with Yamahas. The Ducatis had the highest top speeds but cornered poorly and finished poorly. The Suzukis had the finest handling package but were down on power all over. Finding the right combo to be the fastet in all areas of the track is the key,

            I think in MotoGP last year the Ducatis had the highest trap speed, and often the non factory Ducatis were the fastest overall. The Hondas and yAmahas were really close on trap speed with Rossi’s Yamaha being consistantly the slowest of the factory bikes, yet his riding skills often prevailed over faster bikes

        • Ricky Crue says:

          Oh my bad, I thought we were talking about superbikes 🙂

          • VLJ says:

            We were, but mickey keeps trying to throw Nicky under the bus. This time, he’s trying to compare the much smaller disparity between the Yamaha and Honda in MotoGP with the much larger gap between the dominant Kawis and also-ran Hondas in WSB, the inference being that the WSB Hondas should be able to hang with the others just the way the Yamahas are often able to hang with the Hondas in MotoGP.

            That ol’ mickey, he’s nothing if not dogged! LOL

          • mickey says:

            LOL I am dogged, but this time it was a COMPLIMENT to Hayden that you missed. You see, what I was saying is he ran well even though he was on lesser equipment, meaning his talent shone through. If it was JUST about the equipment, then he would have been further back as would have his team mate who despite being on lesser equipment seemed to run quickly as well.

            and we are talking about racing motorcycles and riders are we not?

  8. Jeremy in TX says:

    These were the first WSBK races I’ve watched in a whilee, and I really enjoyed them. Watching Van der Mark race is a riot. The Honda is obviously down on power, but he can really take that thing hot into a corner and then does a good job of shutting the doors on those trying to get around him. I imagine that is much more difficult to do on other tracks that offer more passing opportunities than Phillip Island, but the guy is fun to watch.

    Hayden looked good in Race 2, just one-tenth of a second away from the podium, and he was the fastest guy on the track during a few laps towards the end of the race. Not bad at all.

    I look forward to more WSBK!

  9. jim says:

    Yeah Ben should have stayed in WSB.

  10. Jim says:

    I’m so happy to see Nicky running the pace of the leading pack.He is not far off his teammate who has been on the bike and tires for much longer than him. I normally subscribe only to motogp for my fix on racing.I’ve always liked Nicky and his attitude.This year I bought the SBK streaming also. I enjoy the racing regardless of if there is an american in it or not, but I have followed Nicky since he was in the AMA, and its fun to root for the underdog…. Go Nicky! I remember Spies SBK season…. was one of the most thrilling things to watch I can recall. I miss that guy!

    • Jason says:

      I followed Hayden from MotoGP to WSB. I’ve never watched a WSB race in my life but bought the season pass Friday.

      No reason to watch MotoGP this year.

      • Jeremy in TX says:

        I bought the streaming package for WSBK mostly because of Hayden. I’m not really a big Hayden fan, but I was curious to see how he would do there as opposed to the “big leagues.”

        I rewatched last years MotoGP Phillip Island after watching WSBK, and the difference in the machinery is pretty astounding. The GP bikes have the power – both on the brakes and on the throttle – to open up passing opportunities that just aren’t feasible in WSBK. I enjoyed the WSBK races thoroughly, but it isn’t a replacement for GP in my book.

        • Jason says:

          It might not be a replacement but today there isn’t a single rider in MotoGP that I care whether they win or not.

          I’ve been a Hayden fan since he was riding AMA and he was the only reason I paid attention to MotoGP last year. I tuned in to see how he did in the Open Class race.

          • Jeremy in TX says:

            Yes, when I think about it, I am really into the bikes themselves as much (more than probably) than the riders which is why it isn’t a replacement for me. But if your fanfare is directed more so or completely to the rider, then I certainly understand why MotoGP has become irrelevant for you. So on that note, go Hayden! I’ll be interested to see how he does on the new CBR machinery next year.

          • Jason says:

            There was a time when I was into the machinery but that was back when it was a true prototype class and engineers had much more freedom to change things. I started watching back in the Dooham era which was at the tail end of the golden age. Today with all the rules, engine development freeze / limits, and most importantly the rise of electronic controls as the dominate factor on the bike, the bikes don’t keep my interest week to week.

            Dorna wants to make MotoGP into a class where money doesn’t matter and a factory can’t just throw more money and engineers into the effort until they win. I understand the logic but it diminishes the class.

  11. GNG says:

    A good excuse to remember the absolutely amazing performance of Ben Spies. New bike, new bike (not a mistake), new tracks, new everything, no excuses, just raw talent. A shame he had to retire.

    Really, what is he up to now?

    • Tyler says:

      Ben’s Burgers. He owns a burger joint in Austin, though I believe he still races BMX on the side.
      For reference, I don’t know if that is the name of his place, I have just been on a Bob’s Burgers binge so that made the most sense to me.

      • Scott says:

        It’s the Stackhouse in Dallas. I went there a couple of years ago, and it was fantastic. I don’t think he has anything to do with the daily operation of the place, though.

        I heard he and his girl are having a baby this year…

  12. Scott says:

    I’m optimistic about Nicky Hayden’s chances this year. He clearly has the speed to run with the leaders. Now, he just needs to figure out how to race these guys, along with learning a few new tracks.

    But this should put to rest the thought that he simply “isn’t fast enough any more”. It has to feel good to be on a bike that allows you to see the front for a change…

    • tony says:

      “isn’t fast enough any more” what they are referring to with that comment is Hayden isn’t fast enough for MotoGP anymore.

      • Scott says:

        Well, that’s debatable. On crappy Open bikes he couldn’t keep up. Nobody else could, either. When he was on the factory Ducati he was just as fast as Rossi. Remember how everyone thought Rossi was washed up because he sucked on that Ducati? Turns out it WAS the bike. Nicky hasn’t been on a competitive bike in MotoGP in at least 6 years.

        Now, if he were to jump on a factory Honda or Yamaha, would he be fast enough to beat the top 4? Maybe not. But I’m certain he could hang with Smith, Crutchlow, Dovi, and plenty of other riders who are very talented and fast, but face it, they’re never going to be Aliens, either…

      • Tim says:

        I agree with Scott. Coming off of his World Championship Honda tailored their new bike to the smaller Pedrosa. He hasn’t had a competitive bike that actually fit him since his championship season. I don’t think he’s as competitive as the top 3 or 4 GP riders but on the right bike he could have been the best of the rest.

    • ze says:

      I wish him the best but P.I. is different, i think in most tracks honda’s lack of power won’t help him.

  13. VLJ says:

    Over-under on how many races Kawi doesn’t win this year: five? Six?