The World Superbike riders faced a very hot Superpole today at the Misano World Circuit. Declared ‘wet’ due to the onset of rain just prior to the session, Althea’s Davide Giugliano put on a great performance in both phases, qualifying on the front row for tomorrow’s races, in fourth position.
In similarly hot conditions to yesterday, the Althea riders returned to the track this morning for the second qualifying session. Both Carlos and Davide improved by about half a second each with respect to their best times set yesterday afternoon. Giugliano made his fastest lap towards the middle of the session, using one of the tried and tested tyres. The time recorded, a 1m36.2, propelled him to the front of the pack, together with his team-mate Carlos who in turn recorded a 1m36.0 in the final stages, taking advantage of one of the new tyre solutions provided this weekend by Pirelli.
Thanks to these very fast times, the two Althea Racing men concluded qualifying in second (Carlos) and third (Davide) position overall, just behind Sykes on the Kawasaki. In the final practice session which took place in the early afternoon, Carlos was the fastest rider on track, recording a best time of 1m36.1. Davide was strong in the early stages but then suffered a small crash which caused him to lose valuable time. He nevertheless closed the session in eighth position.
Superpole 1: in a ‘wet’ Superpole, the two Althea flagbearers waited for the track to dry before making a first exit in this first of two phases. Giugliano made a first exit on race rubber, before returning to the box and mounting a qualifier. With this tyre he was able to make a very fast lap which put him in third place and assured him of safe passage to phase two. Carlos was lapping fast but unfortunately a couple of minutes before the end of the session he returned to the garage as a result of a misunderstanding at the pitwall; this ‘pitstop’ meant that he unfortunately missed the chance to complete the fast lap of which he was capable, closing in sixteenth position.
Superpole 2: once again Davide went out first on a race tyre, moving into seventh place. Knowing that he was able to improve further, he took advantage of the second qualifying tyre, lowering his time by four tenths to secure a place on the front row of tomorrow’s grid. He will line up in fourth position, alongside Sykes, Rea and Badovini.
Carlos Checa: “Maybe we should have clarified our strategy beforehand. There was a miscommunication. They gave me ‘box’ on the pitboard and I thought I needed to come in and change tyre while I should have stayed on track. It’s a shame because we had demonstrated that we had the potential to do well in today’s Superpole. Anyway, we’ll be starting from the fourth row tomorrow and will need to make a good recovery from there. The tyre choice will be key, so we’ll need to make an educated decision and then see what we can do.”
Davide Giugliano: “It’s the second time this season that I’ll start from the front row and I’m very happy with that. I prefer not to say too much because anything can happen in the races but I will say that I feel that I am growing little by little and that we have taken a good result here today. I knew we would be able to do well here at Misano and to start from the front row is the first step. This doesn’t mean that we can relax as we still have everything to do tomorrow but I am feeling confident.”
Geneso Bevilacqua, General Manager of Althea Racing: “At the start of the Superpole there was some confusion due to the rain. Then our strategy was to send Carlos out on the soft race tyre and then with the qualifier, but unfortunately in implementing this strategy we made a mistake in telling Carlos when to return to the garage. And that means that instead of starting from the front row, we’ll be on the fourth. Carlos is nevertheless capable of good results, having shown stronger pace than his rivals in every session – he just needs a fast start. Davide can be one of the protagonists tomorrow – he too has demonstrated that he is competitive and this means that I’m sure he can make two great races.”
TIMES (Superpole): 1. Sykes (Kawasaki) 1’35.3; 2. Rea (Honda) 1’35.9; 3. Badovini (BMW) 1’36.0; 4. Giugliano (Ducati) 1’36.1; 5. Smrz (Ducati) 1’36.1; 6. Haslam (BMW) 1’36.2; 7. Laverty (Aprilia) 1’36.3; 8. Guintoli (Ducati) 1’36.5
Source: Althea Racing
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FG_AUTHORS: Mark Morrison