Andrea Locatelli withstands early pressure from Lucas Mahias to claim his seventh consecutive victory and extends his Championship lead
FIM Supersport World Championship action continued at the Prosecco DOC Aragon Round with Andrea Locatelli claiming another victory and fastest lap as his Championship blitz continued at MotorLand Aragon. Locatelli has now won his first seven races after moving across from Moto2™ to WorldSSP.
Locatelli had been beaten off the line by Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) but took just a handful of corners to re-gain the lead. Mahias was able to put Locatelli under pressure during the first half of the race but his pace started to drop off; Frenchman Jules Cluzel (GMT94 Yamaha) able to pass Mahias on Lap 7. Mahias was able to follow his fellow French rider with the pair duelling for second. Cluzel would finish the race in second place with Raffaele de Rosa (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) claiming a podium after a late charge through the field.
Mahias would finish in fourth place after being passed by Cluzel and de Rosa in the second half of the 15-lap race, the French rider finishing 4.5 seconds clear of Philipp Oettl (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) in fifth place. Isaac Viñales (Kallio Racing) finished in sixth place, almost 10 seconds behind Locatelli.
Viñales had around an eight second gap to Corentin Perolari (GMT94 Yamaha) who was involved in a titanic battle for seventh place with South African rider Steven Odendaal (EAB Ten Kate Racing); the pair finishing the race with a drag race to the line and being separated by just 0.010s as they crossed the line. Danny Webb (WRP Wepol Racing) equalled his best race finish in WorldSSP with ninth place, also featured in race-long battle with Manuel Gonzalez (Kawasaki ParkinGO Team) and Hungarian Peter Sebestyen (OXXO Yamaha Team Toth); Gonzalez and Sebestyen finishing in tenth and 11th but with just 0.017s separating the trio.
Federico Fuligni (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) finished in 12th place with Can Öncü (Turkish Racing Team) finishing in 13th. Alejandro Carranza Ruiz (EMPREADOR Racing) was the highest placed WorldSSP – Challenge rider in 14th while Hikari Okubo (Dynavolt Honda) completed the points with a 15th place finish.
Estonian rider Hannes Soomer (Kallio Racing) retired from the race following a Lap 1 crash, while Axel Bassani (Soradis Yamaha Motoxracing) also crashing during the race and retiring. Lachlan Epis (MPM Routz Racing) failed to finish the race after a crash at Turn 1 in the early stages of the race; the trio the only three to not finish the race.
P1 Andrea Locatelli (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team)
“It’s fantastic and it’s incredible. Every time, we don’t make a mistake, and this is important. We are faster every time. Also, with the difficult conditions today with a lot of wind, we are stronger. We will work a little bit for next weekend because we are staying here for another weekend.”
P2 Jules Cluzel (GMT94 Yamaha)
“I am happy again because the fight was hard. There are a lot of fast guys in this race fighting for second position. I am happy to finish second. To be honest, in some places, I was struggling with the grip a little bit and they were faster than me. The Kawasaki at the beginning was so fast, especially in acceleration and some turns, they were just pulling away. After a few laps, I managed to stay and come back a little bit on Mahias. I passed him and after that, it was another story because I was alone, and I was giving the pace to the riders behind me and they were pushing me hard. To finish second, another second place, but it’s great to take 20 points and be in front of these guys.”
P3 Raffaele de Rosa (MV Agusta Reparto Corse)
“This morning, in warm up, my feeling was very good. I thought it was possible to have a good race. But, as always, my first and second laps were not very quick. After three laps, I check my lap time and see it is very good. I concentrated on overtaking the group in front to claim the podium. I am very happy, especially for my team.”
#AragonWorldSBK MotorLand Aragon – Race 2
1. Andrea Locatelli (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team)
2. Jules Cluzel (GMT94 Yamaha) +2.190
3. Raffaele de Rosa (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) +2.479
4. Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) +2.925
5. Philipp Oettl (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) +7.393
6. Isaac Viñales (Kallio Racing) +9.981
Championship Standings after Race 2, Round 4
1. Andrea Locatelli (ITA) Yamaha (175 points)
2. Jules Cluzel (FRA) Yamaha (130 points)
3. Lucas Mahias (FRA) Kawasaki (86 points)