World Superbike Aragon Results 2012

July 1, 2012
Byron Wilson
Byron Wilson
Associate Editor|Articles|Articles RSS

Byron's sure to be hunched over a laptop after the checkers are flown, caught in his own little version of heaven. Whether on dirt, street or a combination of both, MotoUSA's newest addition knows the only thing better than actually riding is telling the story of how things went down.

Current championship points leader Max Biaggi followed Melandri with the second fastest time in Fridays qualifying at Aragon.
Max Biaggi scored his third consecutive World Superbike win in Race 1 at Aragon after a close battle with Marco Melandri.

Aprilia Racing’s Max Biaggi and BMW Motorrad’s Marco Melandri split the World Superbike wins at Motorland Aragon. Biaggi earned his third consecutive win in Race 1 and Melandri came out on top in Race 2 after a dog-fight for podium position between the top four riders in final laps. ParkinGo’s Chaz Davies and Biaggi’s teammate Eugene Laverty both logged season-best finishes in Race 2, with Davies taking third and Laverty scoring second.

Race 1

Biaggi took over the lead early in the first contest but by mid-race was battling with Melandri for the front. Melandri took second-place a paltry 0.278 seconds behind the Roman. Althea Racing’s Carlos Checa rounded out the podium, but was well off the pace of Biaggi and Melandri, coming in over nine seconds behind the BMW rider.

The day was somewhat cooler than during practice sessions and Superpole, the latter of which Tom Sykes claimed in record-breaking fashion. Sykes came off pole position and held the lead through the first lap, but then slipped behind as Biaggi and Laverty made their way to the front. By Lap 4 Sykes had fallen to fourth with Biaggi and Melandri out front fighting for the lead.

Melandri made his move on the current points leader on Lap 12 and the two proceeded to trade positions a number of times before the checkers. Biaggi got past his fellow countryman with two laps remaining and held to the finish. Sykes remained steady in third and appeared to be in line for the final podium spot, but on the last lap he and BMW Motorrad Italia GoldBet’s Ayrton Badovini made contact, causing both to go down and take DNFs for the race. 

“I knew Melandri and Biaggi had better pace but I was sure we were competitive,” said Sykes. “I still can not understand what was Badovini thinking when he ruined my race, it was definitely not the right place to try to overtake me. Unfortunately the bike was totally destroyed so my boys had to make a completely new bike for the second race.”

The double crash allowed Checa to come across the finish in third. Davies tied what was then his 2012 season best finish in fourth and Biaggi’s teammate Eugene Laverty took fifth.

“We certainly didn’t hold anything back,” said Biaggi. “We were basically all in the same conditions, so there was no way to make the difference. I really had to give 100%, especially after the halfway point when the tyres started to lose grip and I had to be careful not to make any mistakes.”

Honda’s Jonathan Rea started from the second row, but on Lap 1 went down and fell to last and was only able to recover to 16th behind American rider John Hopkins of FIXI Crescent Suzuki. Liberty Racing Team Effenbert’s Jakub Smrz was another rider to go down, though unlike Rea, Smrz did not remount and was taken to the medical center. Smrz did not return to compete in Race 2 and there’s no word yet as to the status of his condition.

World Superbike Aragon Race 1 Results:
1. Max Biaggi (Aprilia)
2. Marco Melandri (BMW)
3. Carlos Checa (Ducati)
4. Chaz Davies (Aprilia)
5. Eugene Laverty (Aprilia)
6. Michel Fabrizio (BMW)
7. Leon Haslam (BMW)
8. Davide Giugliano (Ducati)
9. Leon Camier (Suzuki)
10. Maxime Berger (Ducati)
11. Niccolo Canepa (Ducati)
12. Sylvain Guintoli (Ducati)
13. Lorenzo Zanetti (Ducati)
14. Hiroshi Aoyama (Honda)
15. John Hopkins (Suzuki)
16. Jonathan Rea (Honda)
17. Norino Brignola (BMW)

Marco Melandri took provisional pole on Friday at Aragon.
Marco Melandri captured his third win of the season in Race 2 at Aragon after his final lap pass of Eugene Laverty.

Melandri came out on top in Race 2 thanks to his final lap pass of Laverty. The Irish rider took a season-best finish in second just a hair’s breadth behind Melandri. Davies earned his first podium of the season in third, barely edging out Biaggi who fell short of the podium in fourth. Rea was much improved in Race 2 and rounded out the top five.

The fight for podium position was intense through Race 2 as Biaggi, Laverty, and Melandri remained neck and neck for the entire contest. Positions changed hands a number of times as the front runners kept within one second of one another. Laverty held the lead through the opening laps, falling to Biaggi who moved to the front and remained there until mid-race when his teammate regained the number one position. Melandri drifted back and forth between second and third, briefly holding the lead on Lap 15 and losing it soon after. In total, Melandri only led for two laps, but one of those was the one that counts and he earned his third win of the season. Davies made his move for the rostrum with five laps remaining, bumping Biaggi to fourth, and held second-place for three laps before slipping to third as Melandri charged ahead.

“For the last lap I had no plan, because when racing against those guys you cannot think about a plan because they try to pass you at every corner so I just tried to find a good place for braking at the end of the straight,” said Melandri of Biaggi, Davies and Laverty.

Rea was as far back as ninth during the first-half of the race, but the battle for fifth was as close as the four fighting out front for the podium and the Honda rider was able to make some key passes during the final laps. Up until Rea shot ahead, the battle for fifth raged between Sykes, Haslam and Checa. Sykes held the position for much of the time, fending off the advances of Haslam and Checa, but slipped to eighth during the closing laps and had no time to recover position. Checa lost position coming off the start and was back in 10th after the Lap 1; he was able to fight back and made it as high as sixth mid-race, but the Spaniard had to settle with seventh at the checkers.

Biaggi maintains his points lead, now 48 points ahead of Melandri who shot up from fourth to second place overall. Rea was bumped to third and trails the BMW rider by 17.5. Checa moved up one position from fifth to fourth, displacing Sykes who now resides in fifth.

World Superbike Aragon Race 2 Results:
1. Marco Melandri (BMW)
2. Eugene Laverty (Aprilia)
3. Chaz Davies (Aprilia)
4. Max Biaggi (Aprilia)
5. Jonathan Rea (Honda)
6. Leon Haslam (BMW)
7. Carlos Checa (Ducati)
8. Tom Sykes (Kawasaki)
9. Ayrton Badovini (BMW)
10. Davide Giugliano (Ducati)
11. Michel Fabrizio (BMW)
12. Maxime Berger (Ducati)
13. Sylvain Guintoli (Ducati)
14. Lorenzo Zanetti (Ducati)
15. Hiroshi Aoyama (Honda)
16. David Salom (Kawasaki)
17. Niccolo Canepa (Ducati)
18. Leandro Mercado (Kawasaki)
19. Norino Brignola (BMW)
20. Loris Baz (Kawasaki)

World Superbike Points:
1. Max Biaggi, 248.5
2. Marco Melandri, 200.5
3. Jonathan Rea, 183
4. Carlos Checa, 175.5
5. Tom Sykes, 172.5
6. Leon Haslam, 142
7. Eugene Laverty, 126
8. Sylvain Guintoli, 110
9. Davide Giugliano, 94
10. Chaz Davies, 78

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