The battle for supremacy that has raged between the Bardahl Evan Bros. Yamaha Supported WorldSSP teammates, Randy Krummenacher and Federico Caricasulo, continued today in Imola, with the Swiss rider getting the better of a last lap battle between the two, to claim his third win of the season and to extend his lead at the head of the championship.
Krummenacher led the way in qualifying, smashing the lap record on his way to securing his second pole position start of the season ahead of teammate Caricasulo and GMT94 Yamaha Supported WorldSSP rider, Jules Cluzel.
It was Cluzel who took the advantage from the start to lead the field around the opening lap, with Krummenacher and Caricasulo in close attendance. Three laps in and the French rider had managed to pull out a small gap at the front, with the Bardahl Yamaha pair chasing hard behind to try and regain contact.
One lap later the leading trio were back together, with a significant gap back to the battle for fourth place between Kallio Racing Yamaha supported WorldSSP rider, Tomas Gradinger, and former Supersport World Champion, Lucas Mahias.
A mistake by Cluzel at the Variante Alta on lap seven was all the invitation Krummenacher and Caricasulo needed, with both diving past the Frenchman on the exit of the chicane, as Mahias and Gradinger finally made contact to make it a five-way battle at the front of the race.
This battle quickly became a two-horse race, as Mahias ran into the back of Cluzel at the final chicane at the end of lap 11 and crashed, taking the unfortunate Gradinger into the gravel trap with him and dropping Cluzel back to eighth as the GMT94 Yamaha rider was pushed off track.
Having shadowed Krummenacher for the first half of the race, Caricasulo made his move on lap 13, passing the Swiss rider to take the race lead. Krummenacher continued to put pressure on the Italian before returning the favour on the final lap and retaking the race lead. Caricasulo was unable to respond due to fuel starvation problems, but managed to make it to the finish line to claim second place at the chequered flag.
Cluzel recovered from the incident with Mahias to finish seventh, one place behind Kallio Racing Yamaha’s Isaac Viñales, who crossed the line in sixth. Loris Cresson picked up more championship points in 12th position.
Krummenacher now leads the WorldSSP standings with 115 points, 22 more than Caricasulo, with Cluzel in third with 78 points.
Bardahl Evan Bros. Yamaha Supported WorldSSP – P1 – Championship Position P1 – 115 Points
“I had to work hard for the win here, because Federico was really fast today. I changed a bit my approach in the race and let Federico past before then applying as much pressure as possible. A small mistake from him was all I needed to retake the lead on the last lap and from there I just pushed to my maximum and defended into the final chicane by braking really late and going in tight. I’m really happy with the win; it was a hard one so we need to continue working to improve, because we can improve, but we can also be happy with how we’ve performed this season, as three wins in five races is really nice.”
Bardahl Evan Bros. Yamaha Supported WorldSSP – P2 – Championship Position P2 – 93 Points
“It was a good race, right up until the last lap, when I started to run short of fuel and the bike kept cutting out. It meant I wasn’t able to respond when Randy came past me on the last lap, which was disappointing because I felt like I was riding as well as I did in Assen and that a second race win was possible today. I’m happy with the weekend, because we did a good job, but I’m obviously less happy to have missed out on the win today.”