SBK Europe. Week-end to forget for Biaggi

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Donington – SBK Europe , Sunday March 27th, 2011

The two riders who won races at Donington, Carlos Checa and Marco Melandri, are the two who leave at the head of the championship chase, with Checa now on 91 points and Melandri on 72. In front of 51,500 spectators Superpole winner Checa (Althea Racing Ducati) used his experience to change his rear tyre choice for race two and improve from a third place to be a clear winner, while Melandri (Yamaha World Superbike Team) made two great recoveries from a third row start to post a win and a second place.
Jakub Smrz (Effenbert Liberty Racing Ducati) nearly won the first race, with the local fans having something to cheer about as Leon Camier (Aprilia Alitalia) went third in race two, to make up for a hard first round in Australia that was badly affected by illness.
2010 World Champion Max Biaggi (Aprilia Alitalia) had his drama-laden weekend turn into a mini-crisis as he finished only seventh in race one, and was excluded from race two after jump starting and failing to come in for a ride-through penalty. In the overall championship third place belongs to Leon Haslam (BMW Motorrad Motorsport) on 53 points after two fourths today, while Biaggi has 49 points in fourth overall.

RACE 1- New rider to WSBK racing Melandri took only three races to record his first win, finally overhauling long time leader Smrz to win by 2.455 seconds. The last podium place went to Checa after he passed local hero Haslam with two corners to go. Jonathan Rea (Castrol Honda) scored fifth and Noriyuki Haga (Pata Racing Aprilia) was sixth, one place up on the factory bike of Biaggi. A potentially great finish for Tom Sykes and his Kawasaki Racing Team Superbike machine ended in a crash at the redesigned Esses section, but the home crowd were to have a podium star to cheer for in race two.

RACE 2 - Checa controlled race two from the early laps and won by 3.397 seconds from race one victor Melandri. Camier was a contender for second for long periods, before Melandri upped the pace and left him behind. Another Leon, this time Haslam went fourth for the second time today, despite running off track at one point. Joan Lascorz (Kawasaki Racing Team) was a great fifth on the new ZX-10R machine, despite not yet being at full fitness.

Championship (after 2 rounds of 13): 1. Checa 91; 2. Melandri 72; 3. Haslam 53; 4. Biaggi 49; 5. Smrz 42; 6. Rea 38; 7. Camier 37; 8. Fabrizio 27; 9. Haga 26; 10. Sykes 19; etc