Federico Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team) has taken his first pole position of the 2018 FIM Supersport World Championship after a stunning fastest lap of 1’37.694. The Italian was nearly half a second faster than Jules Cluzel (NRT) in second, and will be in a prime place to claim his first win of the year.
After dominating through Friday and Saturday morning, Caricasulo was again incredibly impressive in qualifying. Three of his laps were faster than the best from anyone else out on track, and with a good start the Italian could bounce back from his Brno DNF in perfect fashion and find himself again in the fight for the championship.
Jules Cluzel clinched another front row start with the second fastest time of Superpole 2. The good news didn’t end there for the Frenchman, as Sandro Cortese (Kallio Racing) could only end the session in fifth. A crash just two minutes in left the German with little time to find his form on the Rimini track, and with Cluzel two points behind in the standings, is in danger of losing his championship lead.
Randy Krummenacher (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team) was third in qualifying, completing an all-Yamaha front row and boosting his options towards a first return to the rostrum since Assen. Raffaele De Rosa (MV Agusta Reparto Corse by Vamag) was just six thousandths of a second behind the Swiss star, but had to make do with fourth ahead of Sunday.
With Cortese in fifth, that row two will be completed by Lucas Mahias (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team) in sixth. The Frenchman had finally found his pace going into his final lap of Misano, but a mistake in the third split took away any option from Mahias of finishing higher up.
One event rider Stefano Valtulini (Pleo Racing Team) was the first Kawasaki in qualifying, clinching a fantastic seventh on tomorrow’s grid ahead of Kyle Smith (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda) in eighth and Hikari Okubo (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), through from the Superpole 1, in ninth. Anthony West (EAB antwest Racing), a former Misano race winner, closes off the top ten.
What fate does Sunday hold for the FIM Supersport World Championship riders? Find out tomorrow at 11:30 local time (09:30 GMT) with the eighth race of the year and the last before the summer break!
Pole Position – Federico Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team)
“I am very happy about this Superpole, I started this Superpole session very hungry as I wanted pole. From the first lap I was very fast and I’m really happy. I want to thank my team because everything is perfect, and we are even fast in the straight, so everything is perfect now.”
#RiminiWorldSBK WorldSSP at Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli: Tissot-Superpole
1. Federico Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team)
2. Jules Cluzel (NRT) +0.491
3.Randy Krummenacher (BARDHAL Evans Bros. WorldSSP Team) +0.804