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Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

WSBK back to UK for Round 9 at Silverstone

Rome (Italy), Tuesday 30 July 2013 – The eni FIM Superbike World Championship will be back in action this week for Round 9 at Silverstone, still mourning the loss of Italian rider Andrea Antonelli.

The Northamptonshire circuit made his WSBK return in 2010 with a completely new layout and, as it used to be back then, the series will be using the “old pits” and the start/finish straight between “Woodcote” and “Copse” curve.

Two technical problems, one during the Tissot-Superpole and the other on lap 4 of the only one WSBK race performed this year at Moscow Raceway, have left Tom Sykes empty-handed in the weekend when the one-year contract extension – between the Brit and the Akashi manufacturer-  was made official. Sykes lies now 2nd in the standings, just 4 points behind Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia Racing Team), who rode through the pain barrier to secure a sixth place under ever changing weather conditions – unlike the other works Aprilia rider Eugene Laverty, who fell off his RSV4 on the sixteenth lap and had to withdraw from the race.

Frenchman won race 2 at Silverstone one year ago – in the wet – after leader (and Race 1 winner) Loris Baz (Kawasaki Racing Team) crashed out, moments before the race was red flagged – and then ended. After winning at Moscow Raceway the 13th World Superbike race of his career, Marco Melandri (BMW Motorrad GoldBet) has narrowed the gap with the front down to 32 points. The Italian – as well as his team mate Chaz Davies – will try and keep the concentration up on the final goal, despite the fresh announcement by BMW regarding the future sporting plans of the German manufacturer.

Following the disappointing result of the 8 Hours race – despite a brilliant effort – Jonathan Rea (Pata Honda World Superbike) is looking forward to a good performance on the track that saw him finishing twice second in 2010 (behind Cal Crutchlow), while winner at Suzuka Leon Haslam hopes to bring some good momentum to his difficult season.

Ayrton Badovini (Team Ducati Alstare) scored his 2012 only podium place at Silverstone, by sliding along the finish straight – and over the line – in Race 1, after losing control of his BMW. The Italian targets another great result on the British venue after bringing the 1199 Panigale R to a long awaited maiden WSBK rostrum finish at Moscow Raceway. Carlos Checa won both races the year before, onboard the Ducati 1198.

The FIXI Crescent Suzuki Team – still looking for its first top-3 race finish in the season – aims to turn the page on a difficult first part of the season and to shine, in front of the home crowd, with its riders Leon Camier and Jules Cluzel.

Standings – provisional (round 8 of 15): 1. Guintoli 239; 2. Sykes 235; 3. Melandri 207; 4. Laverty 190; 5. Davies 174; 6. Baz 144; 7. Rea 138; 8. Fabrizio 131; 9. Giugliano 99; 10. Camier 87; 11. Cluzel 83; 12. Badovini 75; 13. Neukirchner 69; 14. Checa 59; 15. Haslam 42; 16. Sandi 33; 17. Clementi 18; 18. Iannuzzo 15; 19. Canepa 11; 20. Lundh 10; 21. Lai 8; 22. Allerton 6; 23. Stauffer 4; 24. Akiyoshi 2; 25. Haga 2; 26. Aitchison 2. Manufacturers: 1. Aprilia 300; 2. Kawasaki 267; 3. BMW 262; 4. Honda 151; 5. Suzuki 129; 6. Ducati 112.

* Possible updated results could be defined by the International Disciplinary Court which is dealing with the appeal lodged by Aprilia Racing Team and rider Sylvain Guintoli, following the decision taken by the FIM Stewards in Monza (Italian Round, last 12 May) to cancel the drop of position sanction (from third to fourth place in race 2) imposed by the Race Direction on rider Tom Sykes.

World Supersport

As the fatal crash that led to the tragic loss of Andrea Antonelli brought to race cancellation at Moscow Raceway, World Supersport riders are about to face the ninth round of the season at Silverstone with the same standings positions as after late June’s race at Imola. Sam Lowes (Yakhnich Motorsport Yamaha) will try to maintain his 34 points margin over defending Champion Kenan Sofuoglu (Mahi Racing Team India Kawasaki).

The Turkish was 5th last year on the English track, after an outstanding recover following an early run-off into the gravel, while home rider was edged by former team mate Jules Cluzel at the chequered flag by only 0.157 seconds. Frenchman Fabien Foret (Mahi Racing Team India Kawasaki) aims to mix it up front, as well as Suzuka 8 Hours winning team member Michael van der Mark (Pata Honda World Supersport). Despite the injuries sustained after finding himself involuntarily involved in Andrea Antonelli’s crash, and the shock after it, Lorenzo Zanetti will be on track this weekend at Silverstone to race for the departed rival and friend.

Former British Supersport stars and WSS rookies Jack Kennedy (Rivamoto Honda) and Christian Iddon (ParkinGo MV Agusta Corse) are hoping for a strong performance on a track they both know very well. David Salom (Intermoto Ponyexpres Kawasaki) joins back team mate Luca Scassa after missing the last round in what’s been so far a very tough season (the Spaniard has only two races under his belt in 2013).

AARK Racing Team has decided to switch to Honda for the rest of the season, meaning Australian Mitchell Carr will be riding a CBR600RR – after racing a Triumph Daytona 675 for eight rounds.

Standings (round 8 of 14): 1. Lowes 140; 2. Sofuoglu 106; 3. Foret 85; 4. Vd Mark 73; 5. Zanetti 68; 6. Scassa 63; 7. Antonelli 55; 8. Kennedy 47; 9. Leonov 42; 10. Rolfo 40; 11. Marino 39; 12. Morais 36; 13. Russo 28; 14. Coghlan 22; 15. Ivanov 18. Manufacturers: 1. Kawasaki 155; 2. Yamaha 148; 3. Honda 104; 4. MV Agusta 46; 5. Suzuki 19; 6. Triumph 6.

Superstock 1000

After the race win achieved at Imola one month ago, Sylvain Barrier (BMW Motorrad GoldBet) leads the FIM Superstock 1000 Cup standings by 12 points over Niccolò Canepa (Barni Racing Ducati), who was 2nd at the flag on home soil while team mate Eddi La Marra crashed out on Lap 9, as he was trying to keep up with the Frenchman.

La Marra heads to the double race at Silverstone focussed on redeeming himself after a DNF that had a big impact in his Title chase – as he lies now 4th in the standings with a 26-point gap from Barrier. The Italian scored last year, on the British venue, his first ever win in the series. Similar situation for Jeremy Guarnoni (MRS Kawasaki), who needs some strong finishes to stay in contention for victory.

Standings (round 5 of 10): 1. Barrier 95; 2. Canepa 83; 3. Guarnoni 70; 4. La Marra 69; 5. Mercado 60; 6. Savadori 46; 7. Jezek 45; 8. Bussolotti 33; 9. Lanusse 32; 10. Lussiana 25; 11. Andreozzi 23; 12. Gildenhuys 16; 13. Massei 15; 14. Bergman 15; 15. McFadden 13; etc. Manufacturers: 1. BMW 106; 2. Ducati 101; 3. Kawasaki 83; 4. Honda 17; 5. Suzuki 5.

Superstock 600
Despite a 10-point lead on Franco Morbidelli (San Carlo Team Italia Kawasaki), Gauthier Duwelz (MTM-MVR Racing Yamaha) needs to get back on top step of the podium to slow down the impressive momentum of the Italian rider. The young Belgian hasn’t won since the second race of the season at Assen while Morbidelli, even though he was edged out by team mate Alessandro Nocco for the win at Imola, has officially raised to the status of title contender. Tony Covena (Nito Racing Kawasaki) and Bastien Chesaux (EAB Ten Kate Junior Honda), third and fourth in the standings respectively with 19 and 20 points from the leader, will try to be part of the battle for the top-3 in the two races scheduled for the weekend.

Standings (round 5 of 10): 1. Duwelz 84; 2. Morbidelli 74; 3. Coveña 65; 4. Chesaux 64; 5. Nocco 50; 6. Gamarino 47; 7. Morrentino 44; 8. Salvadori 37; 9. Nestorovic 33; 10. Mulhauser 32; 11. Casalotti 25; 12. Tessels 19; 13. Vitali 19; 14. Tuuli 17; 15. Schmitter 17; 16. Tatasciore 16; 17. Marchal 14; 18. Mercandelli 9; 19. D’Annunzio 8; 20. Jones 7; 21. Mamola 5; 22. Nekvasil 5; 23. Vavrous 5; 24. Cecchini 2; 25. Spedale 1; 26. Basic 1.

European Junior Cup

Thanks to his first win of the season at Imola, young Frenchman Guillaume Raymond (Activbike) moved up to first place in the Pata European Junior Cup standings. The fight for the Title of the entry-level, one make series powered by Honda is still very close as the UK Round draws near: former leader Michael Canducci (Colors Experience) and Robin Anne (Anne Formation) are second and third with 2 and 3 points respectively from the leader, while Kiwi Jake Lewis (Jake Lewis Racing) is only 7 points behind Raymond.

Standings (round 4 of 8): 1. Raymond 48; 2. Canducci 46; 3. Anne 45; 4. Lewis 41; 5. Fernandez 36; 6. Sebestyen 35; 7. Pittet 29; 8. Fernandez 28; 9. Bendsneijder 25; 10. Flitcroft 25; 11. Levy 23; 12. Manfredi 23; 13. Rusmiputro 21; 14. Bodis 20; 15. Arenas 20; etc.

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