WSS : With Misano podium
Kenan Sofuoglu (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda CBR600RR) rode one of the hardest races of the year in temperatures over 30°c during the two-part WSS race at Misano today. He recorded a hard fought third place finish and extend his overall championship
lead to 61 points.
Sofuoglu's closest championship rival Fabien Foret crashed out after a collision on lap four of the first leg, and Sofuoglu's 16 points for third put him on a total of 161 points to Foret's unchanged 100.
The race was stopped after four laps when a blown engine on a local competitor's machine dropped oil onto the track. The 18-lap restart saw Sofuoglu fight to the end with Broc Parkes in a dispute over the aggregate second place finish behind winner Anthony West. Sofuoglu had been fourth in qualifying, the top Honda rider pre-race.
Reigning Supersport World Champion Sebastien Charpentier (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda CBR600RR) had another tough weekend in WSS, scoring ninth in qualifying, tenth in the race then jumping up to 15th in the championship.
Sofuoglu was only mildly disappointed with third, but knows that the championship is the long-term aim.
"The conditions were very tough today and to choose a good set-up and tyre combination was very hard", said the Turkish rider. "After the red flag stopped the first part I was pushing at my limit in the restart, but the problem was still the few seconds I was down from the first leg. That time was impossible to make up. I am still leaving here with a good championship lead, so that is the most important thing."
A crisis of confidence for Charpentier in the first part of the two-part race held back his overall performance and problems later in the second part sealed his ultimate finishing position of tenth.
"Today has been very difficult", said Charpentier. "The first half of the race was really bad. I am not completely confident and I lost a lot of time. After the red flag, the second start was OK. We kept the tyres the same and after six or seven laps the grip started to go. It was hard for me to follow the group.
Because the grip in the rear was less, I pushed harder in the front and that caused the grip in the front to go as well. I finished the race with no grip at all so there was no possibility of me finishing in a good position. We are testing in Brno soon and I hope it goes well for me because for the moment it is not easy for me, weekend after weekend."