One of the most exciting Superpoles of the season saw Ducati Xerox’s Michel Fabrizio power to his first ever career success at the Imola circuit in Italy. The man from Rome clinched the pole with a time of 1 minute 47.735 seconds right on the final lap of the session, taking it out of the hands of Ben Spies (Yamaha World Superbike), quickest until then, by just 0.043 of a second. The first row was completed by two of the other championship front-runners, Jonathan Rea (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda) and Noriyuki Haga (Ducati Xerox), with the gap between the four (0.150 secs) one of the smallest in WSB history.
Michel Fabrizio: “I’m really happy, I wanted this Superpole at all costs, and it’s even more satisfying to get it at home. Maybe I should only do the Italian championship as I got my first win at Monza and my first pole here! In any case tomorrow it’ll be a great battle between us young guys, because our race pace is pretty similar, so I feel sure we’ll have some fun tomorrow.”
Ben Spies: “It was a good session for us but I kind of blew it in the last section, making a big mistake and that cost us, but I’m on the front row which is where we need to be. All the top guys are on the front row, which is how it should be, none of us will be hanging around so let’s hope we have some fun tomorrow.”
Jonathan Rea: “The pace there in the afternoon was fast and we just missed out a little. In the last session and the last qualifier made a big mistake and didn’t quite resurrect that so there wasn’t enough time left. Anyway we’ve got a good race set-up tomorrow, I’m really happy, the guys have done a marvelous job, we’ve got so many new things to try and every week the package is getting better and better.”
The second row sees Jakub Smrz (Guandalini Ducati) in fifth, followed by Max Biaggi (Aprilia Racing), while Shane Byrne (Sterilgarda Ducati) was in seventh ahead of Marco Simoncelli (Aprilia Racing), the Italian taking his RSV4 machine to a brilliant eighth place on his WSB debut. Troy Corser (BMW) will start from row 3 in ninth after being eliminated from Superpole 2 by a fraction. Lorenzo Lanzi (DFX Ducati) looked promising on the third row, while Carlos Checa (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda) could only manage 13th. It was a negative day for Suzuki Alstare Brux with both riders Yukio Kagayama and Karl Muggeridge starting from row 5.
Times: 1. Fabrizio M. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1’47.735; 2. Spies B. (USA) Yamaha YZF R1 1’47.778; 3. Rea J. (GBR) Honda CBR100RR 1’47.834; 4. Haga N. (JPN) Ducati 1098R 1’47.885; 5. Smrz J. (CZE) Ducati 1098R 1’48.156; 6. Biaggi M. (ITA) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1’48.665; 7. Byrne S. (GBR) Ducati 1098R 1’49.092; 8. Simoncelli M. (ITA) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1’49.338; 9. Corser T. (AUS) BMW S1000 RR 1’48.971; 10. Haslam L. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 1’48.992; 11. Lanzi L. (ITA)Ducati 1098R 1’49.060; 12. Nieto F. (ESP) Ducati 1098R 1’49.105; 13. Checa C. (ESP) Honda CBR1000RR 1’49.168; 14. Kiyonari R. (JPN) Honda CBR1000RR 1’49.340; 15. Lagrive M. (FRA) Honda CBR1000RR 1’49.641; 16. Sykes T. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R1 1’49.681
Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha World Supersport) continues to dominate Supersport qualifying, the Coventry man taking his ninth pole of the season. The championship leader was one of the only riders to lap under 1 minute 51 seconds, and he put in his quickest lap three minutes from the end of qualifying. Crutchlow, who was also the only rider to crash in the session, was more than half a second quicker than second placed Kenan Sofuoglu (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda), while the other two front row men, Joan Lascorz (Kawasaki Motocard.com) and Massimo Roccoli (Intermoto Czech Honda) were third and fourth but over 1 second off the pace. For the Italian it was his first front row start of the year. Garry McCoy (Triumph 675) again went well for the ParkinGo BE1 team, the Australian qualifying fifth quickest ahead of two of the other championship front-runners Eugene Laverty (Parkalgar Honda) and Fabien Foret (Yamaha World Supersport). Britain’s Chaz Davies put the second Triumph BE1 machine on row 3, in eleventh place, on his debut.
Times: 1. Crutchlow C. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R6 1’50.680; 2. Sofuoglu K. (TUR) Honda CBR600RR 1’51.260; 3. Lascorz J. (ESP) Kawasaki ZX-6R 1’51.955; 4. Roccoli M. (ITA) Honda CBR600RR 1’52.280; 5. McCoy G. (AUS) Triumph Daytona 675 1’52.400; 6. Aitchison M. (AUS) Honda CBR600RR 1’52.443; 7. Laverty E. (IRL) Honda CBR600RR 1’52.599; 8. Foret F. (FRA) Yamaha YZF R6 1’52.789
Pole position in the Superstock 1000 FIM Cup went to wild-card entry Ayrton Badovini (Aprilia), the erstwhile Superbike rider obtaining the satisfaction of finishing ahead of two championship contenders, leader Xavier Simeon (Ducati Xerox) and Claudio Corti (Suzuki Alstare), who were separated by half a second. The front row was completed by Michele Magnoni (Bevilacqua Yamaha), who is also a wild-card in the Imola race. The third title contender Maxime Berger (Ten Kate Honda) qualified on row 2, with two more Italian riders alongside Daniele Beretta (Ducati Xerox) and Andrea Antonelli (Yamaha Trasimeno).
Times: 1. Badovini A. (ITA) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1’52.417; 2. Simeon X. (BEL) Ducati 1098R 1’52.609; 3. Corti C. (ITA) Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 1’53.191; 4. Magnoni M. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R1 1’53.666; 5. Barrier S. (FRA) Yamaha YZF R1 1’53.726; 6. Berger M. (FRA) Honda CBR1000RR 1’53.931; 7. Beretta D. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1’53.932; 8. Antonelli A. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R1 1’53.945
Five Italians line up in the first five positions in qualifying for the European Superstock 600 race, with points leader Danilo Petrucci (Yamaha Trasimeno) starting from pole. Two-tenths behind can be found his team-mate Marco Bussolotti, while the wild-cards Roberto Tamburini (WCR Yamaha) and Giuliano Gregorini (Baru Yamaha) are third and fourth, albeit some way off the pace. On the second row can be found Eddi La Marra (Honda Lorini) and title contender Gino Rea (Ten Kate Honda), while the winner of the last two rounds Vincent Lonbois (MTM Yamaha) will only start from row 3.
Times: 1. Petrucci D. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R6 1’56.190; 2. Bussolotti M. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R6 1’56.308; 3. Tamburini R. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R6 1’56.944; 4. Gregorini G. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R6 1’57.133; 5. La Marra E. (ITA) Honda CBR600RR 1’57.196; 6. Rea G. (GBR) Honda CBR600RR 1’57.222; 7. Guarnoni J. (FRA) Yamaha YZF R6 1’57.705; 8. Morelli N. (ITA) Honda CBR600RR 1’58.167