Tom Sykes claimed a fortuitous victory on Saturday at Misano after a dramatic conclusion to race one in Italy. The Yorkshireman was running a distant fourth heading into the final lap but two separate incidents ahead of him, including one between title rivals Jonathan Rea and Chaz Davies, promoted him to the lead three corners from the finish.
There were few signs of the drama that was going to follow in Superpole with Sykes taking a comfortable pole position ahead of Rea and the two Aruba Ducatis. Michael van der Mark had qualified fifth and the PATA Yamaha man sliced his way through to second through the opening sequence of corners. The Dutchman wasn’t done there though as he outbraked Rea into turn one on the second lap, giving Yamaha the lead of a race for the first time since Phillip Island.
While many were expecting van der Mark to slip backwards, the surprise leader was holding his own ahead of Rea, Davies and Marco Melandri with Sykes now detached In fifth. The dream of a maiden win was cruelly ripped away from him with seven laps to go though as the rear end of the Yamaha YZF-R1 snapped away in alarming fashion, taking van der Mark out through no fault of his own and leaving Rea to contest the victory with the two Ducatis.
Davies moved to the front with three to go, barging Rea wide in a move which allowed Melandri to briefly grab second, but with one lap remaining, Rea was right back on the tail of the no.7 Panigale again. Any threat from behind was removed at Rio when Melandri slid out with a front-end crash and the Italian will have been cursing his luck soon afterwards when Davies had a similar tumble at turn 14, bringing Rea down in the process.
With Melandri now out of contention, Sykes couldn’t believe his luck as he inherited a second win of 2017 while Alex Lowes jumped up from fifth to second, giving Yamaha some consolation after van der Mark’s fall. Rea re-mounted to salvage third and in a classy move on the slow-down lap, stopped at turn 14 to check on the fallen Davies who was later taken to hospital for a check-up.
Jordi Torres was fourth, earning race two pole position, ahead of Xavi Fores and Eugene Laverty while Randy Krummenacher claimed a career-best seventh, edging out Roman Ramos and Lorenzo Savadori.
WorldSBK 2017: Pirelli Riviera di Rimini Round – Race One Result
|1||66. Tom Sykes||Kawasaki||Kawasaki Racing Team||33:44.269||25|
|2||22. Alex Lowes||Yamaha||Pata Yamaha Official WSBK Team||+4.551||20|
|3||1. Jonathan Rea||Kawasaki||Kawasaki Racing Team||+8.126||16|
|4||81. Jordi Torres||BMW||Althea BMW Racing Team||+10.850||13|
|5||12. Xavi Fores||Ducati||BARNI Racing Team||+13.649||11|
|6||50. Eugene Laverty||Aprilia||Milwaukee Aprilia||+20.508||10|
|7||88. R. Krummenacher||Kawasaki||Kawasaki Puccetti Racing||+22.498||9|
|8||40. Roman Ramos||Kawasaki||Team Kawasaki GoEleven||+26.329||8|
|9||32. Lorenzo Savadori||Aprilia||Milwaukee Aprilia||+28.965||7|
|10||35. Raffaele de Rosa||BMW||Althea BMW Racing Team||+32.171||6|
|11||2. Leon Camier||MV Agusta||MV Agusta Reparto Corse||+38.314||5|
|12||15. Alex de Angelis||Kawasaki||Pedercini Racing SC-Project||+39.829||4|
|13||86. Ayrton Badovini||Kawasaki||Grillini Racing Team||+50.478||3|
|14||37. Ondrej Jezek||Kawasaki||Grillini Racing Team||+55.208||2|
|15||33. Marco Melandri||Ducati||Aruba.it Racing – Ducati||+1:02.645||1|
|NC||6. Stefan Bradl||Honda||Red Bull Honda WorldSBK Team||+7 Laps|
|NC||7. Chaz Davies||Ducati||Aruba.it Racing – Ducati||+1 Lap|
|NC||60. Michael van der Mark||Yamaha||Pata Yamaha Official WSBK Team||+7 Laps|
|NC||84. Riccardo Russo||Yamaha||Guandalini Racing||+9 Laps|
|NC||36. Leandro Mercado||Aprilia||IODARacing||+9 Laps|
|NC||61. Fabio Menghi||Ducati||VFT Racing||+19 Laps|