The World Supersport championship took yet another swing in 2019, with the BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team riders of Federico Caricasulo and Randy Krummenacher battling hard throughout the 19-lap encounter with the rest of the field, to come out on top – in that order – ahead of a charging Jules Cluzel (GMT94 YAMAHA).
Lights-out and it was an explosive start from third on the grid for 2017 WorldSSP Champion Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), who took the holeshot ahead of Federico Caricasulo and Randy Krummenacher. Raffaele De Rosa (MV AGUSTA Reparto Corse) was up to fourth whilst Thomas Gradinger (Kallio Racing) dropped to fifth ahead of Hikari Okubo (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing). Jules Cluzel had a bright start but was fighting hard on the opening lap, in the leading group but making little progress.
It was a leading group of seven at the front of the field, but Lucas Mahias was looking vulnerable, with Randy Krummenacher making his way ahead of the Frenchman at Turn 6, whilst Caricasulo also made his way ahead of the Kawasaki man. Mahias fought back on Caricasulo but the Italian was having none of it on Lap 4. As the two battled, Krummenacher pulled clear.
However, soon they were all back with the Swiss rider, whilst De Rosa passed Mahias at Turn 6 on Lap 5, before Mahias began to look vulnerable. The Frenchman battled with Gradinger between Turn 9 and 10, which allowed fellow countryman Jules Cluzel to take both of them into Turn 11. All of the squabbling had allowed the leading three to break clear, with a whole second lost.
But as is the case in WorldSSP, battles soon started at the front and they were all back together again as one group with nine laps to go. Hikari Okubo had dropped off the back of the leading group and was a relatively safe seventh position. Caricasulo and Krummenacher enjoyed swapping paint and trading passes as the teammates continued their season long battle, with most overtakes coming at Turn 1, Turn 6 and Turn 13.
Jules Cluzel went from fifth to third in half a lap, as he got De Rosa for third at Turn 1 with seven laps left to complete. Later in the lap, Krummenacher passed Caricasulo at Turn 6 and held the lead for the next few laps. Cluzel got into second momentarily with six to go at Turn 13 but couldn’t hold on as Caricasulo fought back with five to go.
Jules Cluzel’s race pace had been phenomenal, racing up from eighth on the grid and now had the lead as he got ahead of Caricasulo at Turn 13. However, it didn’t last long as the Italian fought back and put 0.7s into the chasing pack on the penultimate lap, although Krummenacher was now second as he passed Cluzel at Turn 6.
Despite Krummenacher’s best efforts, Caricasulo put the hammer down in the closing laps to take a second consecutive Jerez win and setting a new lap record on the final lap. Randy Krummenacher completed yet another BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team 1-2, with Cluzel finishing a hearty third. Thomas Gradinger pushed his way through to fourth ahead of Raffaele De Rosa and early race leader, Lucas Mahias.
Okubo was seventh ahead of home rider Isaac Viñales (Kallio Racing) ahead of Corentin Perolari (GMT94 YAMAHA) and Hungarian rider, Peter Sebestyen (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda), who completed the top ten. Hannes Soomer (MPM WILSport Racedays), Loris Cresson (Kallio Racing) Ayrton Badovini (Team Pedercini Racing), Maria Herrera (MS Racing) and Rob Hartog (Team Hartog – Against Cancer) rounded out the points.
P1 – Federico Caricasulo (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team)
“Jerez is one of my favourite tracks, but this year, I am feeling quite comfortable everywhere. I am sorry that my lap record of yesterday was cancelled because it was a good one, but it’s ok. Today we did a great job. I tried to put someone between Randy and me, to get more points from him but it didn’t work as he was fast too. During the final two laps, I pushed like a was doing qualifying and managed to increase the gap, and that was enough to win. I am really pleased about it”.
#ESPWorldSBK WorldSSP at Circuito de Jerez Angel Nieto – Race
1. Federico Caricasulo (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team)
2. Randy Krummenacher (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team) +0.968
3. Jules Cluzel (GMT94 YAMAHA) +1.346
WorldSSP Championship Standings after Round 6
1. Randy Krummenacher (SUI) Yamaha (135 points)
2. Federico Caricasulo (ITA) Yamaha (118 points)
3. Jules Cluzel (FRA) Yamaha (94 points)