World Superbike action came to Assen this weekend, and it didn’t take long for the Dutch track to claim it’s first victim. Seeing a rider crash in the first round, and a number of big names lost in the second round shuffle, the Superpole format clearly is still a quagmire for many teams. This didn’t stop a couple familiar names from making it onto the front row, but going into the WSBK round in Holland, you never would have guessed who these riders would have been.
Crashing in the very first round of the Superpole qualifying, Christopher Vermeulen found himself caught by his leg as he was dragged into the gravel trap, making this another unfortunate weekend for the Australian rider. With round two proving to be the definitive round for teams, a slew of WSBK favorites found themselves knocked out of the qualifying, including Biaggi, Haga, and Toseland.
For Dutch racing fans, the third round would prove to have more excitement than the second. Johnny Rea took the Superpole victory (on “home turf”), trumping Spies’ 2009 qualifying time at Assen by over two and a half seconds. Other surprises came in the form of Troy Corser, who finished third on the grid with his BMW S1000RR. This qualification marks a big milestone for the Bavarian team.
This result is also another sign that all is not well in the Ducati WSBK camp. With Haga out in round two, and Fabrizio the slowest in round one, the Bologna Rockets are clearly struggling this season after nearly winning the championship last year.
Superpole Results from World Superbike at Assen, Netherlands:
|1||65||J. Rea||Honda CBR1000RR||1’34.944||–|
|2||96||J. Smrz||Ducati 1098R||1’35.062||0.118|
|3||11||T. Corser||BMW S1000 RR||1’35.306||0.362|
|4||91||L. Haslam||Suzuki GSX-R1000||1’35.330||0.386|
|5||2||L. Camier||Aprilia RSV4 1000 F.||1’35.633||0.689|
|6||7||C. Checa||Ducati 1098R||1’35.892||0.948|
|7||67||S. Byrne||Ducati 1098R||1’35.909||0.965|
|8||84||M. Fabrizio||Ducati 1098R||1’36.405||1.461|
|Out after Superpole 2|
|9||35||C. Crutchlow||Yamaha YZF R1||1’36.027||0.610|
|10||52||J. Toseland||Yamaha YZF R1||1’36.061||0.644|
|11||3||M. Biaggi||Aprilia RSV4 1000 F.||1’36.069||0.652|
|12||111||R. Xaus||BMW S1000 RR||1’36.094||0.677|
|13||50||S. Guintoli||Suzuki GSX-R1000||1’36.327||0.910|
|14||66||T. Sykes||Kawasaki ZX 10R||1’36.348||0.931|
|15||41||N. Haga||Ducati 1098R||1’36.574||1.157|
|16||76||M. Neukirchner||Honda CBR1000RR||1’36.581||1.164|
|Out after Superpole 1|
|17||99||L. Scassa||Ducati 1098R||1’36.906||1.409|
|18||57||L. Lanzi||Ducati 1098R||1’36.989||1.492|
|19||77||C. Vermeulen||Kawasaki ZX 10R||1’38.378||2.881|
|20||23||B. Parkes||Honda CBR1000RR||1’38.622||3.125|
|Out of Superpole|
|21||15||M. Baiocco||Kawasaki ZX 10R||1’38.471||2.850|
|22||95||R. Hayden||Kawasaki ZX 10R||1’38.769||3.148|