Rain was the tyre of choice for all the riders

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WorldSBK: Nicky Hayden wins his first ever WSBK race in the wet on his Honda, in WorldSSP Ayrton Badovini wins; Pirelli DIABLO™ Rain was the tyre of choice for all the riders

On a rainy race day, the World Champion “Kentucky Kid” takes the Tokyo manufacturer back to the top step of the podium after an absence of almost two years, while Indonesian Zulfahmi Khairrudin was cheered on by his home crowd for a WorldSSP podium

The second day of the MOTUL FIM World Superbike Championship Malaysian round was held today at the Sepang International Circuit where it was strongly influenced by the heavy rainfall throughout the afternoon, forcing the riders in both categories to use Pirelli DIABLO™ Rain tyres.

In these difficult weather conditions, American Nicky Hayden (Honda World Superbike Team) rode a spectacular race, taking his first ever win in the Championship for factory derivative bikes and bringing the Tokyo motorcycle manufacturer back to success after almost two years. In fact, the last Honda win in the eni FIM World Superbike Championship dates back to 2014, when Jonathan Rea won Race 2 at Portimão.

Perhaps even more spectacular was the FIM Supersport World Championship race which, after a series of spectacular passes, had Italian Ayrton Badovini (Gemar Balloons – Team Lorini) winning ahead of the hometown hero, Malaysian Zulfahmi Khairrudin (Orelac Racing VerdNatura).

In Race 2 of WorldSBK, Race 1 winner Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) got off the line well with teammate Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes on his Yamaha behind him, although the latter was overtaken by Nicky Hayden (Honda World Superbike Team) shortly after.

Tom Sykes was then overtaken first by Rea and then by Hayden, slipping back into third place ahead of Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) in fourth.

By the end of the first lap, the “Kentucky Kid”, as American rider Nicky Hayden is known, had taken the lead with a manoeuvre that put him ahead of Rea. In the meantime, Sykes was also overtaken by Davies to drop into fourth place and Davide Giugliano (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) began his comeback in the second lap, moving into fifth place.

During the third lap, Giugliano overtook Tom Sykes who was also passed by Anthony West a little later, relegating the Brit to sixth place.

In the early stages of the fourth lap, Alex Lowes put a move on Michael Vd Mark to move into seventh place, but by the end of the lap the Dutchman had taken the position back.

Everything moved along smoothly until the eighth lap when Davide Giugliano came dangerously close to teammate Chaz Davies, lying in third place at the time.

In the meantime, Nicky Hayden was away at the front with a 3.5 second advantage over the chasing group of Rea, Davies and Giugliano, all three within one second of each other.

At the end of the tenth lap, just at the last turn, Rea was overtaken first by the Welsh Ducati rider and, shortly thereafter, by Gugliano, leaving Rea in fourth place.

In the meantime, race leader Nicky Hayden had pulled the pin to stretch out a 4.2 second gap ahead of the next closest rider Chaz Davies.

The turning point of the race came in the twelfth lap: Davide Giugliano overtook his teammate to move into second place.

During the thirteenth lap, Rea tried to take at least the third step of the podium, getting quite close to Davies, managing to get the better of him a lap later.

In the race finale, the Italian rider Giugliano, not satisfied with settling for second place, launched an attack on Hayden, closing the gap to just one second. However, the ace from Kentucky was unwavering as he managed the advantage, winning his first ever WorldSBK race ahead of the Roman’s Ducati and Rea’s Kawasaki.

Race 2 standings:

1) Nicky Hayden (Honda World Superbike Team)
2) Davide Giugliano (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati)
3) Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team)
4) Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati)
5) Anthony West (Pedercini Racing)
6) Michael van der Mark (Honda World Superbike Team)
7) Alex De Angelis (IodaRacing Team)
8 ) Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team)
9) Leon Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse)
10) Markus Reiterberger (Althea BMW Racing Team)

The FIM Supersport World Championship race was called a wet race from the start. Before the end of the first lap the red flag came out due to the copious rainfall that reduced the riders’ visibility. The race was suspended and postponed until after the WorldSBK race.

When it resumed there were fourteen laps to race. Poleman Kenan Sofuoglu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) was unable to exploit the advantage of starting from the first spot on the grid and he was slowly overtaken by other riders. From the third position, it was Gino Rea (GRT Racing Team) who moved up to take the provisional race lead, ahead of hometown hero Zulfahmi Khairuddin (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) who moved into the lead during the third lap. In the meantime, after starting from the sixth spot on the grid, Ayrton Badovini (Gemar Balloons – Team Lorini) cleared the way to move into place behind the Malaysian during the eighth lap. From the midway point on, Badovini and Khairuddin gave the fans at the track and watching from home a great show. In the end it was the Italian who came out on top, but the applause was all for the hometown hero standing on the second step of the podium. Gino Rea finished third on his MV Agusta

Supersport standings:

1) Ayrton Badovini (Gemar Balloons – Team Lorini)

2) Zulfahmi Khairrudin (Orelac Racing VerdNatura)
3) Gino Rea (GRT Racing Team)
4) Patrick Jacobsen (Honda World Supersport Team)
5) Kyle Smith (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda)
6) Kenan Sofuoglu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing)
7) Jules Cluzel (MV Agusta Reparto Corse)
8 ) Randy Krummenacher (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing)
9) Alex Baldolini (Race Department ATK#25)
10) Federico Caricasulo (Bardahl Evan Bros. Honda Racing)

The Pirelli solutions chosen by the riders for Race 2 and Supersport:

The heavy rain that began to fall when the WorldSSP race was scheduled to start and that lasted for three hours, forced both the WorldSBK and WorldSSP riders to use exclusively tyres from the DIABLO™ Rain range.

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情報提供元 [ Pirelli ]

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