The Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team has completed the opening race of the US Round of the 2017 FIM Superbike World Championship, with Stefan Bradl able to clinch 11th place in the final moments of the 25-lap encounter. His teammate for the round, Jake Gagne, scored his first World Championship point at his first attempt by crossing the finish line in fifteenth position.
After a steady start from row six, Bradl started getting up to speed and as the laps went by, he was able to make up some places in the five-way battle for eleventh place. The 27-year-old kept a consistent pace throughout the whole race, which helped him get past Ramos on the final lap for 11th place.
Jake Gagne had a solid maiden WorldSBK race performance today, which allowed the young American to enter the World Superbike standings with one point under his belt. Gagne showed a solid and consistent pace as he joined the battle for 11th position after some encouraging overtaking manoeuvres, while also shadowing at times his much-more experienced team mate.
Both Stefan and Jake’s starting position for race two will not change, meaning that they will line up on the race two grid alongside each other in 17th and 18th place, respectively.
Stefan Bradl 6
Overall it wasn’t a bad race. I had a bad start and from then towards mid-race, I struggled in using the potential of the rear tyre so it was hard to stay with the guys in front of me. I managed to stay calm, though, and to save the tyre a little bit more, so I had a bit more rubber to play with in the second half of the race. I bridged the gap with the group ahead and was able to make some decent passes, even on the last lap when I overtook Ramos. This is definitely a positive, although when you make some important changes throughout the weekend it is sometimes hard to get the right feel for the bike. But in any case, the second part of the race was positive and I hope we can build on it and improve our result in race two.
Jake Gagne 45
It was a good race and I’m really happy. The biggest thing is that we made all 25 laps and learnt a lot about the bike’s behaviour over the race distance and from the riders I was riding with. It’s a dream come true to finish my first World Superbike race in the points, so I can say it’s been a good day. It’s something to build on for tomorrow: we will try to make some improvements, I have some really great guys to work with so I will try to be a little faster tomorrow.
Obviously our qualifying position has had quite an impact in race one. Stefan wasn’t able to make the most of fresh tyres in the first part so that’s why he lost a lot of ground early on. Once the tyres started to wear off a little, however, he picked up a good rhythm, managed to make some passes and put together quite a decent race overall. That was a positive note for us. There is clearly still a lot to improve, so first thing tomorrow morning will be to help him find the right feeling with the bike on new tyres. Jake was in the same group as Stefan and even managed to stay with him for a part of the race; he did a very good race, especially for being his first in the championship. He pushed the front tyre a bit too much – perfectly understandable – so he ended up missing some grip in the second half.
Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, United States
- Air Temp: 28°C
- Humidity: 41%
- Ground Temp: 54°C
|#||Rider||Num||Nationality Nat.||Points Pts.||Team||Constructor Constr.||Time/Gap|
|1||Chaz Davies||7||GBR||25||Aruba.it Racing||Ducati||35’14.812|
|2||Jonathan Rea||65||GBR||20||Kawasaki Racing Team||Kawasaki||+1.202|
|3||Tom Sykes||66||GBR||16||Kawasaki Racing Team||Kawasaki||+5.798|
|4||Marco Melandri||33||ITA||13||Aruba.it Racing||Ducati||+17.574|
|5||Xavi Fores||12||SPA||11||BARNI Racing Team||Ducati||+21.159|
|6||Leon Camier||2||GBR||10||MV Agusta Reparto Corse||MV Agusta||+23.016|
|7||Jordi Torres||81||SPA||9||Althea BMW Racing Team||BMW||+31.986|
|8||Michael van der Mark||60||NDL||8||Pata Yamaha||Yamaha||+32.933|
|9||Leandro Mercado||36||ARG||7||IodaRacing Team||Aprilia||+35.963|
|10||Lorenzo Savadori||32||ITA||6||Milwaukee Aprilia||Aprilia||+36.912|
|11||Stefan Bradl||6||GER||5||Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team||Honda||+44.961|
|12||Román Ramos||40||SPA||4||Team Go Eleven||Kawasaki||+45.203|
|13||Raffaele De Rosa||35||ITA||3||Althea BMW Racing Team||BMW||+45.901|
|14||Alex De Angelis||15||RSM||2||Pedercini Racing SC-Project||Kawasaki||+46.043|
|15||Jake Gagne||45||USA||1||Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team||Honda||+46.805|
|16||Ayrton Badovini||86||ITA||0||Grillini Racing Team||Kawasaki||+54.463|
|17||Randy Krummenacher||15||SWI||0||Puccetti Racing||Kawasaki||+56.989|
|18||Jakub Smrz||96||CZE||0||Guandalini Racing||Yamaha||+1’06.108|
|19||Ondrej Jezek||37||CZE||0||Grillini Racing Team||Kawasaki||+1’11.766|
|NC||Eugene Laverty||50||GBR||0||Milwaukee Aprilia||Aprilia||DNF|
|NC||Alex Lowes||22||GBR||0||Pata Yamaha||Yamaha||DNF|