World Superbike: Fourth win of the season for Checa and Althea Racing

World Superbike: Having enjoyed a third place finish in race 1, Carlos Checa and the Althea Racing team were really ready to celebrate when the Spanish rider was able to take a spectacular win in the second race on the TT Circuit in Assen today.

world superbike, 2011 world superbike racing, 2011 world superbike, 2011 assen world superbike, assen world superbikeRace 1 – Carlos, starting from pole, was able to maintain leadership for a couple of laps before being passed by several riders over the subsequent laps. Having opted for the harder tyre solution, Carlos needed a few laps before he was able to find the necessary pace. From mid-race onwards he really began to push and, from fourth position, began to close in on Laverty in third. Once past the Irish rider, Checa aimed for the two leaders Rea and Biaggi. At this point all three riders were lapping with similar times and for Carlos to close the two second gap that separated him from the frontrunners was a big challenge. He got close but had to settle with the third step of the podium in this first race.

Race 2 – after two laps Carlos took the lead ahead of Biaggi and Rea and so the three podium finishers from Race 1 were the very same men fighting for the positions that counted in Race 2. In the second half of the race, still lapping with a very quick pace, Carlos was caught by Biaggi who got by him but didn’t stay ahead for long. Checa, making the most of his soft tyre choice (which turned out to be the correct choice) was able to get back in front two laps from the end – the public enjoying one of the best passes seen so far – and hold the lead to the finish line.

With today’s win, Carlos consolidated his lead in the championship standings with 132 points and a 43 point advantage over Biaggi in second place. Ducati remains ahead in the manufacturer’s standings with 136 points to Aprilia’s 106.

Carlos Checa

“The beginning of race 1 was difficult; I didn’t have enough grip and so some of my rivals were able to get past me. Then I really had to push to make up lost ground. I tried to stay clam and maintain my rhythm and was able to get in front of the second group, but to reach Max and Johnny wsa just too difficult. They already had an advantage because I had lost time getting past Laverty. I happily accept the result however, a positive end that gives us important championship points.

Then for Race 2 we decided to change tyre and so, with the softer solution, I had more grip and could maintain a strong pace right from the start. I wanted to push at the beginning and try to build a gap between me and Max but he stayed with me, putting me under pressure. When I made a small mistake and he passed me in the final stages, I was able to see that he was having some tyre trouble. I got back past him and took the win, a result that is surprising but fantastic. At Monza we will try to defend our position as best we can, knowing that it will be a very tough track for us.”

Genesio Bevilacqua, General Manager of Althea Racing
“The Race 2 result gives us enormous satisfaction in light of the race 1 outcome, which was nonetheless a good result. We had some doubts regarding tyre choice because the harder solution didn’t perform as we had expected it to. We risked a little, concentrating on the softer tyre that we had tested in yesterday’s long run. The choice turned out to be the right one. Carlos surprised me once again; there are no longer any doubts that he is able to make the most of every opportunity that arises and this gives us great confidence as a team because we see he is able to take advantage of everything we give to him. I thank the team for the incredible work carried out this weekend, as it was also one of the most difficult races in terms of choices. Thanks too to Ducati for providing us with a solid package once again. We’ll continue like this, we’re very happy but we must also keep our eyes open in view of future rounds.”

RESULTS:

Race 1 – 1. Rea (Honda); 2. Biaggi (Aprilia); 3. Checa (Ducati).

Race 2 – 1. Checa (Ducati); 2. Biaggi (Aprilia); 3. Rea (Honda)

CLASSIFICATION:

Riders – 1. Checa (Ducati) 132; 2. Biaggi (Aprilia) 89; 3. Melandri (Yamaha) 85; 4. Reaa (Honda) 79; 5. Haslam (BMW) 68; 6. Camier (Aprilia) 50; 7. Smrz (Ducati) 49; 8. Fabrizio (Suzuki) 47…… Manufacturers – Ducati 136; Aprilia 106; Yamaha 97; Honda 79; BMW 74; Suzuki 47; Kawasaki 43

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