JD Beach has won the fifth edition of the Barcelona Superprestigio indoor flat track race. The American passed Toni Elias in the first couple of laps and led for almost the entire 16 laps of the Superprestigio Superfinal.
Beach entered the Superfinal as favorite, having won all three of the Open class final races to face off against the best of the roadracing world in the Superprestigio class.
Briar Bauman, the second American entry, finished in second, not far behind Beach, having fought his way through from fourth in the early laps.
He took over second from Spanish flat tracker Ferran Cardus with a very firm pass on the last lap, demoting Cardus to a very close third. Toni Elias was the best road racer, finishing fourth ahead of Fabio Di Giannantonio.
Alberto Arenas finished sixth, while Guillermo Cano ended in seventh ahead of Remy Gardner. Cano and Gardner clashed in the first corner on the opening lap, putting them out of contention.
The Palau San Jordi was notably emptier than in previous years, the obvious explanation being the absence of Marc Márquez, who was responsible for the event being founded.
Márquez withdrew in late November, saying that he needed a rest after a hard and tiring season. With an indoor flat track race scheduled to take place on 15th December 2018 in Paris, it is likely that this was the last race here in Barcelona.
The crowds may have been smaller, but the level of competition was markedly higher than in the early years.
The general level of flat track racing in Europe has been raised enormously since the first event back in 2014, the racing being closer and offering the Americans who have flown over to race some real competition.
Cardus, in particular, was a real threat to Beach and Bauman, and obviously capable of more.
Results of the 2017 Superfinal at the Barcelona Superprestigio:
|2||14||Briar Bauman||USA||Kawasaki||American Flat Track||0.965|
|3||1||Ferran Cardús||ESP||Suzuki||Spanish Flat Track||1.687|
|5||21||Fabio Di Giannantonio||ITA||Zaeta||Moto3||10.154|
|7||179||Guillermo Cano||ESP||Suzuki||Spanish Flat Track||11.781|
|8||87||Remy Gardner||AUS||Yamaha||Moto2||1 lap|
Photos: © 2017 Steve English – All Rights Reserved