Prat and Domingos secure Stock and Open Class Victories at the 2022 YXZ1000R SuperFinale
The 2022 Yamaha YXZ1000R European Cup SuperFinale came to a thrilling conclusion on Saturday 29th October, with Spanish-Uruguayan pairing Miquel Prat and Sergio Lafuente triumphing in the Stock class, while Portuguese solo entrant Vitor Domingos took Open class victory at home.
The final day of the Baja Portalegre 500 saw the 19 YXZ1000R SuperFinale crews take on 350 km of tough special stage. Rain across parts of the stage caused an unpredictable challenge for the field, but a thunderstorm that threatened to disrupt the action in the late afternoon held off to the end of the day.
After a 37 km liaison to the starting point of Nisa, fastest Stock qualifiers from Saturday and eventual winners, Miquel Prat and Sergio Lafuente led the field away in the morning. Their fellow podium sitters, 2021 Stock winners Luis Sainero & Amir Kouch from Spain, and Germany’s Peter Scharmach with Portugal’s Goncalo Barnquinho kept them honest the whole day as the second and third-placed crews traded split times in pursuit of the Spanish-Uruguayan duo.
By the fifth and final split, Prat and Lafuente led by 4’12.8 from Sainero/Kouch, and the lead pair found even more pace to cross the line 4’19.8 ahead, with a combined time of 6:08’32.2 giving them a hard-fought maiden SuperFinale victory from Sainero/Kouch in second and Scharmach/Barnquinho third.
In the Open class day one pacesetter Ricardo Carvalho initially romped into the lead at the first split, ahead of Domingos by two minutes with solo Italian driver Severino Gallini a further minute behind. Carvalho’s lead continued until the end of the second split, when mechanical disaster struck, and he lost almost two hours. His misfortune allowed the pack to reduce the gap, with Luis Caseiro & João Azeiteiro initially setting the pace before losing time in the fourth leg.
Friday’s runners up, British pairing William Buller & Chris McPhee, demonstrated fantastic pace to take over the lead, with an 8-minute penalty looming over them after their mechanical issues on Friday. A superb final split gave them the overall lead at the finish, however with their penalty they took second place in just their second SuperFinale entry. A constant threat for the whole stage, it was Domingos who ultimately took a deserved win with a combined 6:23’54.1 and entry to a Baja 2023 event. Just 1’55.4 behind in real pace terms were Buller/McPhee, with solo driver Gallini completing the podium in an impressive third place.
Every YXZ1000R crew helped stage a fantastic third edition of the YXZ1000R SuperFinale and are to be congratulated for their respective national cup campaigns, and continued part in Yamaha’s growing and ever-popular SSV series.