Yamaha World Superbike riders encountered a challenging and eventful race day at the Nurburgring today as the dramatic second race was performed in treacherous conditions on extremely wet asphalt.
Melandri and Laverty completed the first race of the day, held on a dry track, in second and fourth places respectively. The opening laps of the race saw the two Yamaha WSB riders interchange their third and fourth positions on several occasions. An error on Laverty’s behalf at the “Warsteiner bend” on lap 6 caused him to go wide, allowing Melandri to take possession of third place, before closing in on Haga and climbing to second. Two laps later on the same corner Melandri made a similar mistake, causing him to fall back to fourth place and preventing him from battling for the victory. The Italian put his head down and battled it out with Laverty and then Haga to re- claim second place by the 16th lap. Determined, he fought hard to keep his Japanese competitor at bay before crossing the finish line and claiming a spectacular second place on the podium.
The second race of the day was held in treacherous conditions. A difficult start from front row on the grid saw Melandri fall back to seventh place while team-mate Laverty sat in fourth. As heavy rain drenched the German circuit rendering poor visibility and an extreme lack of grip, six riders; Fabrizio, Toseland, Aitchison, Camier, Tamada and finally race leader Haga, crashed out of contention. The Yamaha World Superbike riders prudently completed a race that seemed like a battle to remain standing. Despite the adverse track, the race was not red flagged until the 14th lap. Eugene Laverty successfully reached the finish line in fifth place with his team-mate close behind in sixth.
Marco Melandri leaves the Nurburgring having jumped up to second place on the championship standings with 302 points, 74 behind Checa in the lead and holding a 21 point advantage over Biaggi, who was unable to race today due to injury. Laverty has maintained his fourth position with a total of 232 points. With this weekend’s impressive results, Yamaha are still second in the Manufacurer’s standings having further extended the gap from third place by 15 points and the Yamaha World Superbike Team have confirmed the lead in the Team standings and hold a 99 point advantage.
Yamaha World Superbike Team – 4th, 5th
“I was unfortunate in race one because my pace was good all weekend. I didn’t have as good a feeling on the bike as I had yesterday and the low track temperature didn’t’ help to improve the grip on the rear tyre. The second race was treacherous and on safety grounds I think it should have been stopped. I got the impression there was oil on the track after Rea came off his bike and re-joined so everyone was crashing out. We did well that all the riders are coming away without major injuries but I’m upset that we had to risk so much.”
Andrea Dosoli – Yamaha World Superbike Team Manager
“Marco did really well on this track which he was unfamiliar with before now. He achieved an important podium but it’s a shame that an error on lap 8 prevented him from battling with Carlos for the victory, a target which he could have reached. Eugene was also on top form even if he could not display his full potential in the race. He did not have the same feeling with the bike that he had yesterday. The second race was dramatic. The riders completed 14 laps over the limits of security. From the 11th lap onwards the weather got worse and as a consequence it was even riskier for the riders. I’m relieved that both riders managed the dangerous situation so well without getting injured and gained important points for the championship. For the future we need to find a way to avoid these risks for the rider’s safety. I am satisfied to be leaving Nurburgring in second place in both the riders and manufacturers standings and have further increased our advantage in the team standings.”