Carlos Checa takes a race win at the 2011 Donington World Superbike

World Superbike: Carlos Checa’s spectacular start to the 2011 World Superbike season continued on Sunday with his third win in four races at Donington Park for the Althea Racing Ducati team.

2011 world superbike, 2011 world superbike racing, world superbike, world superbike racing, 2011 donington world superbike, donington world superbike, carlos checa, 2011 carlos checa, ducati world superbike, ducati racing, ducatiA third place in race 1 also helped him to consolidate his leadership in the championship and the Spaniard now has a 19 point lead over Marco Melandri, 92 points to 71, with two rounds down.

Checa was eleventh on the first lap of race 1 after a bad start but then worked his way through the field to take third after overhauling Leon Haslam at the Melbourne hairpin in spectacular style on the final lap.

“In Race 1 I was struggling at the start, I didn’t have feeling with the rear tyre and as a result I lost a lot of positions. But I have to say it was one of the most exciting races of my career, so many riders touching, crashing, everything! After the first laps I was able to build up a good rhythm and start moving up through the pack one rider at a time. It wasn’t easy but I pushed hard and then two laps from the end I realised that I could maybe get past Haslam too for third. I’m really happy because I didn’t think I’d get from 11th on lap one to the podium. We made the decision to use the hard tyre solution for the race and even thought we paid for this at the start it turned out to be the right decision in the end.”

Checa and the team then opted for a softer solution after the break and this proved to be was the winning move as he dominated to take the eighth win of his career in Superbike. For Carlos this victory at Donington was something extra special as he had a horrific accident at the Craner Curves in the 1998 British GP in which he suffered a ruptured spleen that left him temporarily blind.

“We opted for the softer tyre in race two,” he said. “We knew it would be very high performing although a bit less so towards the end of the race. It remained pretty consistent but towards the end I had to change my riding a little to manage the situation. My strategy was to get to the front, built up a bit of a lead and then manage that lead and today everything worked perfectly. It was great to win at Phillip Island but today meant even more to me. A lot of people may remember what happened to me here many years ago; that day I lost something here but today I can say that I found it again.”

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