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Unlucky Badovini two laps from shock win
24 April 2012
Ayrton Badovini is refusing to dwell on his misfortune after coming to within two laps of scoring an unexpected maiden World Superbike Championship win at Assen.
The Italian was one of the standout performers of the 2011 season with rookie outfit BMW Italia, but has endured a troublesome start to his 2012 campaign, a fact seemingly compounded at Assen when a crash in qualifying left him a lowly 16th on the grid.
Nonetheless, Badovini was able to show the turn of speed that made him a consistent top ten performer last season by stealthily battling his way up to sixth position when the first race was halted because of rain.
Faring even better during the treacherous restart, Badovini was running second behind Carlos Checa when the Spaniard made an error and allowed the former Superstock 1000 champion into the lead of a WSBK race for the first time in his career.
However, just two laps from the chequered flag, Badovini too would succumb to the awful conditions, crashing on the exit of Hoge Heide to scupper his hopes of a first win for both himself and BMW as a manufacturer.
Despite requiring some medical attention for a painful back, Badovini bounced back in race two to get a fine seventh place finish, a positive result he hopes will signal his return up the WSBK order.
"After the difficulties we went through in the first two rounds I can say I'm quite happy with the performance this weekend but at the same time I'm disappointed about not getting the results I was looking for. It's a pity about race one. My position before the crash was not bad at all!
“In race two I struggled a bit in the first part due to the damp patches and the backache, but after five or six laps I relaxed and got into a rhythm that matched the top five riders. We're back in the right direction."
Prior to Assen, Badovini - who was tenth overall in 2011 - had scored just two points from the opening four races.
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