Cool Davies wins chaotic Assen race
17 April 2011
Chaz Davies has launched himself into the World Supersport title fight after prevailing in a dramatic, twice-interrupted race at Assen.
A race delayed heavily by two serious accidents, firstly for Lowes and then again for Alexander Lundh, Davies kept his cool amidst chaotic surroundings for a long awaited first WSS victory.
With his Yamaha team-mate Luca Scassa failing to finish, Davies has moved to within five points of the series leader.
The first start had been shaping up to be an entertaining tussle between Davies, who had just worked his way to the front, Lowes and Scassa, only for Lowes to lose the rear-end of his Parkalgar Honda and be catapulted into a high-side.
The vicious impact would knock the youngster unconscious, necessitating an immediate red flag. Taken to the medical centre, while Lowes would come around, he has now been transferred to hospital to undergo treatment for concussion.
With the race reduced to 16 laps, the second start was stopped again just two laps in – once again with Davies at the front – after Marko Jerman crashed out of the final corner and collected Lundh. The Swede, stricken in the middle of the circuit, was clipped by a rival rider, prompting a second red flag period in order for marshals to tend to him.
With a depleted grid made up of the positions at the end of lap five of the original start – meaning Scassa, Davies, Broc Parkes and Florian Marino made up the front row – Davies got away best to snatch the lead into the opening bend, followed closely by Gino Rea, the youngster benefitting from the shaken up grid to jump from fifth.
His charge into the opening bend, however, came at the expense of Scassa, who was forced wide and down to fifth, while Broc Parkes also sat up and slipped into the mid-field.
With clear air in front of him, Davies began to push, pulling Rea and Florian Marino with him, while Scassa took until lap seven to get onto the lead group after dispatching Massimo Roccoli and Fabien Foret.
However, Scassa's swift progress was brought to a dramatic halt on lap eight when he mis-judged his braking behind Marino and clipped the Ten Kate Honda. Sending both barrelling into retirement, Scassa's failure to finish – having won the opening two rounds -, is set to open the title fight up once more.
Foret inherited third and then second at the expense of Rea, before going in hunt of Davies, who was continuing to control the pace out front.
The Frenchman could do nothing about Davies, however, who – having claimed a personal best finish of second at Donington Park – went one better to record a popular maiden victory by a clear seven seconds.
Foret held onto second for a strong first finish of the season, while Parkes launched an outstanding recovery to snatch third position in the closing laps.
The Kawasaki man's performance is particularly significant as it places him just three points behind Scassa in the overall standings, despite having not yet won a race. Davies, meanwhile, is now just five points adrift.
Third position had looked to be going the way of Rea, but the Step Racing rider would crash with four laps remaining, dropping him down to 17th position.
Robbin Harms maintained his consistent start to the year on his privateer Honda with a determined ride to fourth, ahead of David Salom, Roccoli, James Ellison - who was rewarded with seventh after a tough weekend – Roberto Tamburini, Miguel Praia and Rea's team-mate Vladimir Ivanov.
Outside the top ten, Team Hungary Toth scored its best results with Balazs Nemeth in 11th and Imre Toth in 12th, ahead of Pawel Szkopek, Bastien Chesaux and Danilo Dell'Omo.