WSBK » French WSBK Live Commentaries

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15:34
UK Time
What a performance by Tom Sykes. Join us agin in 2 weeks time to see if he can finish the job off in Jerez. Thanks for joining us!
15:27
UK Time
With Sykes' substantial lead he needs a single 4th place finish at Jerez to claim his maiden WSBK crown.
15:25
UK Time
Looking at the times from race 1 Sykes' best time was over 0.6secs better than Guintoli's fastest time. What a dominant performance.
15:23
UK Time
It is now mathematically impossible for Melandri to win the title, the Italian is stranded 72 points behind Sykes with only 50 left to play for.
15:21
UK Time
Sykes' lead at the top grows to 37 points. Laverty's 2nd takes him back ahead of his teammate in the championship by a single point.
15:18
UK Time
That's Sykes' 3rd double win of the year and definitely his most impressive. Surely he has 1 hand on the title now.
15:17
UK Time
The top 10 at the end of race 2: Sykes, Laverty, Guintoli, Giugliano, Davies, Philippe, Melandri, Elias, Lanzi, Badovini.
15:16
UK Time
In parc fermé Guintoli is holding the shoulder he hurt in that bicycle accident earlier in the year. He landed on it awkwardly in that fall.
15:14
UK Time
With the rain falling heavily, Laverty ran under Guintoli into Adelaide. The Frenchman was on a wide line and lost the front as he turned into the corner. Laverty was then thrown off as he accelerated out of the hairpin! Luckily for them they got back on and are included in the results.
15:13
UK Time
Wow, what a dramatic end! The Aprilias are included in the results, meaning Sykes will have to wait until Jerez to claim the World Superbike crown.
15:12
UK Time
The red flag has come out meaning Sykes takes the win.
15:11
UK Time
The Aprilias are down on the last lap!
15:10
UK Time
Sykes starts the last lap and the white flags are out to tell the riders it's raining!
15:10
UK Time
This could really end in tears, Laverty and Guintoli are lighting up this race by trading places at nearly every turn. Guintoli is 2nd as we start the last lap.
15:09
UK Time
Once again the Aprilias swap positions through Estoril, Adelaide and 180 with two laps left. This is Gigi D'all'igna's worst nightmare!
15:06
UK Time
This battle for 2nd is going to run and run as Laverty gets back past his teammate at Adelaide. Only 3 laps to go!
15:05
UK Time
On lap 19 Guintoli gets great drive out of 180 and goes under Laverty into Imola. The French crowd go wild!
15:03
UK Time
Incredibly Melandri is now up to 8th, circulating behind his old MotoGP teammate Elias.
15:03
UK Time
Guintoli rejoins just behind Laverty, the battle for 2nd is still alive.
15:02
UK Time
Just ahead of him and Laverty goes 2nd, out-braking Guintoli into Adelaide. The Frenchman is too eager to get back and runs across the run-off area around Nurburgring. Luckily he doesn't lose too much time.
15:01
UK Time
In that battle for 4th Giugliano has put a second into Davies behind him as the Italian continues his fine form.
14:59
UK Time
Guintoli hasn't shaken off his teammate though. The battle between the Aprilias will run to the end.
14:59
UK Time
On lap 16 of 23 Sykes gap is now over 7 seconds, he has been totally relentless. The faces in the Aprilia garage look far from pleased.
14:57
UK Time
Now Fabrizio's Honda has expired as he runs gingerly down the back straight. A lap before Iannuzo crashed at 180, it's proving to be a race of attrition here in Magny Cours.
14:55
UK Time
Cluzel's GSX-R is still running though and he's rejoined the race in 15th.
14:55
UK Time
Cluzel's disastrous day at home continues as he drops it at Chateaux d'Eau, sliding out of 9th. What a shame for the man who won the World Supersport race here last year.
14:53
UK Time
As we start lap 12 the top ten looks like this: Sykes, Guintoli, Laverty, Giugliano, Davies, Philippe, Elias, Cluzel, Fabrizio, and Badovini.
14:52
UK Time
Although Laverty can't afford to make a mistake and take out his teammate he needs to finish ahead of Guintoli for his title chances. This battle for 2nd isn't over.
14:50
UK Time
By the way Melandri is still circulating, albeit down in 13th place. He is 5 seconds behind Lanzi in 12th.
14:49
UK Time
Guintoli makes his move on Laverty into Chateaux d'Eau on lap 9 to go 2nd! Was the Frenchman biding his time all along?
14:47
UK Time
Leon Haslam's wretched luck continues as his Honda appears to lock up going in Adelaide. Thankfully Leon stays on but his race is over.
14:46
UK Time
Sykes aside, arguably the ride of the race so far goes to Vincent Philippe circulating in 6th ahead of Elias and Fabrizio.
14:45
UK Time
As we start lap 7 Sykes' best of 1min 37.9secs is 0.4secs faster than his best from race 1. No wonder the gap at the front is continuing to grow.
14:44
UK Time
The BMW of Melandri runs off the track at the 180 hairpin. His championship hopes are over.
14:43
UK Time
Laverty has already lapped 0.3secs faster than his best time from race 1 but it's not enough to live with the Kawasaki.
14:41
UK Time
This is an incredible opening from Sykes. The gap back to Laverty is now 2.6secs and we're only on lap 5!
14:40
UK Time
Melandri slides under Davies into the Adelaide hairpin to go 5th on lap 4. They've already lost touch with the front three though.
14:39
UK Time
Pirro is down! He slides off at Chateaux d'Eau.
14:39
UK Time
There is another fantastic battle brewing in 7th, with the Pata Hondas, Alstare Ducatis and Cresent Suzukis all involved with a battle with Elias.
14:37
UK Time
Melandri's hopes of a good result are diminishing, he's been passed by Giugliano and Davies. Still no team orders in the BMW camp then.
14:36
UK Time
After the 1st lap Sykes has posted a lap 1/2 a second faster than the Aprilias. A stunning opening from the Kawasaki man.
14:35
UK Time
Giugliano nearly gets thrown off going around Estoril! He's getting shuffled down the pack, he's 5th behind Guintoli and Melandri.
14:34
UK Time
The lights go out and Sykes gets the hole shot but Laverty is through to 2nd from the 2nd row!
14:30
UK Time
As we begin the warm-up lap a reminder of the grid: Sykes, Guintoli, Giugliano – Laverty, Fabrizio, Badovini – Melandri, Davies, Philippe – Pirro, Elias, Cluzel – Salom, Lanzi, Haslam
14:29
UK Time
Sykes could theoretically win the title in this race, although it would require both Aprilias to not score.
14:28
UK Time
Sykes can now finish 3rd in all 3 remaining races and still lift the crown. The question is will he push on here in race 2?
14:27
UK Time
Marco Melandri, starting from 7th, has to outscore Sykes by 7 points if he wants to be in with a shout, albeit a slim one, of the title at the final round in Jerez.
14:26
UK Time
After his temper in the gravel trap Toni Elias took to Twitter to apologise to Vincent Philippe for taking him out. That mistake aside though and Elias looked to have the speed to finish 6th.
14:25
UK Time
It’s worth watching out for Jules Cluzel from 12th, he had climbed to 6th in race 1 after just 2 laps before chucking it. He’ll be fast off the line.
14:23
UK Time
Although we had rain throughout Saturday and it was forecast for today, we’ll be racing in dry conditions in race 2.
14:22
UK Time
Both Sylvain Guintoli and Eugene Laverty know they'll have to start well and disrupt the Kawasaki man's rhythm in the opening laps if they are to stand a chance of winning.
14:20
UK Time
Race 1 may not have been the most exciting but it was a demonstration of superb consistency from Tom Sykes. His first 12 laps were in the 1min 38secs bracket, only 2 others were able to lap that pace all race.
14:19
UK Time
Welcome back to Magny Cours for Crash.net's coverage of the 2nd World Superbike race of the day.
11:56
UK Time
So Sykes edges closer to his debut World Superbike crown. Join us again at 14.30GMT for our coverage of race 2!
11:55
UK Time
The winner Sykes says, "It wasn't easy from where I was sitting. It was a fast race but we need to make some improvements. Sylvain kept me honest and it was a tactical race. I'll be delighted if we can do the same in race 2."
11:54
UK Time
Guintoli: "I felt comfortable at the start. I was trying to make up time but it was hard. We need to do better than that, I gave everything I had but I couldn't do any more."
11:53
UK Time
Laverty in 3rd says, "We have to improve. That wasn't what we needed. I didn't think we would struggle that much. We need to fix the rear and the chassis for race 2."
11:50
UK Time
It's worth noting Vincent Philippe remounted and finished 13th after being taken out by Elias. A commendable effort from the endurance ace.
11:48
UK Time
The front 2 were racing in another class, their fastest race laps were over 0.5secs faster than the next quickest man's. Laverty et al have a busy few hours in the garage before race 2.
11:46
UK Time
Melandri now sits 56 points behind Sykes meaning he needs to gain 6 points on the Kawasaki man if he wants to go to Jerez with a chance of winning the crown.
11:44
UK Time
A run down on the top 10 from race 1: Sykes, Guintoli, Laverty, Giugliano, Melandri, Pirro, Fabrizio, Haslam, Badovini & Lanzi.
11:43
UK Time
That extends Sykes' advantage to 29 points at the top of the standings. Guintoli overtakes his teammate to jump up to 2nd, Laverty is now 32 behind the leader.
11:41
UK Time
The Englishman controlled that race brilliantly at the front. Anytime Guintoli edged closer he was able to up the pace and deservedly takes his 8th win of 2013.
11:38
UK Time
With only 4 laps remaining when the flags came out that means Sykes takes the victory ahead of Guintoli and Laverty.
11:38
UK Time
Aitchison high-sided coming out of the 180 hairpin and his Kawasaki is stricken in the middle of the track. That was an easy decision for race direction to take.
11:36
UK Time
The red flags are out!
11:36
UK Time
There will be some head scratching in the BMW camp as Melandri circulates in a lonely 5th, over 25 seconds behind Sykes.
11:35
UK Time
With 5 to go the Pata Hondas continue to fight amongst themselves with Badovini poised to take advantage of any slip up between the pair.
11:33
UK Time
Lorenzo Lanzi is running a strong 10th ahead of David Salom on his return to the series.
11:32
UK Time
On lap 18 Guintoli has pulled 0.3secs back on Sykes. This is a real game of cat and mouse at the front and the crowd are getting excited as they see the gap come down to 1.8secs.
11:30
UK Time
As Philippe was looking to rejoin Elias ran over and remonstrated - I have no idea why though. That was definitely the Spaniard's fault. Philippe is up and running again.
11:29
UK Time
Oh no! Elias is down at Chateaux d'Eau and he takes Philippe with him! They're out of 7th and 8th.
11:28
UK Time
Haslam is having to look over his shoulder, Elias is right behind and tries a move into Adelaide only to run wide and relinquish the position.
11:27
UK Time
Sykes adds another 0.2 to his lead but Guintoli proved in the 2nd race at Laguna that he can get stronger towards the end of the race. With the gap at 2.4secs a home win is still possible.
11:25
UK Time
Pirro has disposed of the 2 Pata Hondas and has moved into 6th. Elias and Philippe are up next and looking to make a move.
11:24
UK Time
Those opening 4 laps are proving to be critical to the outcome of this race as Laverty is just unable to make any inroads on the front 2. The Northern Irishman will need to make some dramatic changes ahead of race 2.
11:21
UK Time
On lap 11 the gap between Sykes and Guintoli remains at 1.2secs with 12 to go.
11:20
UK Time
Things are fairly spread out at the front but the battle for 6th is red hot with Fabrizio, Haslam and Pirro all in the mix.
11:18
UK Time
Back in the pack Vincent Philippe is holding an impressive 10th having just been mugged by Toni Elias at the Adelaide hairpin.
11:16
UK Time
Sykes is really pushing hard here, he put another 0.4secs into Guintoli on lap 7. He's visibly on the limit.
11:15
UK Time
Michele Pirro, who has appeared in Ben Spies' place in MotoGP this season, is holding an impressive 8th on the Alstare Ducati.
11:14
UK Time
At the start of lap 7 Sykes is gradually edging ahead of Guintoli, his gap is up to 1 second at the front.
11:14
UK Time
Melandri is having real problems here, he's lost touch with the Aprilias ahead and is now being caught by the Honda pairing of Fabrizio and Haslam.
11:12
UK Time
And he's through, coming down the back straight into Adelaide. That didn't take long! He has 4.5 seconds to bridge if he wants to join his teammate at the front.
11:11
UK Time
Laverty is starting to make inroads on Giugliano in 3rd as the pair now have a comfortable 3 seconds on Melandri in 5th.
11:10
UK Time
Guintoli sets the fastest time on lap 3 and he looks to be biding him time behind Sykes at the front.
11:09
UK Time
And Jules Cluzel has fallen on the 3rd lap out of his home race.
11:09
UK Time
After 3 laps Sykes and Guintoli are over 2 seconds ahead of the rest. You have to say Melandri's title hopes are slipping away here.
11:08
UK Time
...and as Chaz Davies gets involved and passes Melandri through Imola he loses the front at the next corner. That's the Welshman's race over!
11:07
UK Time
Laverty and Melandri aren't holding back swapping places through the entry and exit of 180...
11:06
UK Time
Meanwhile teammate Laverty is getting held up by the BMWs in 5th. He can see the 2 at the front disappearing in the distance.
11:05
UK Time
Guintoli wastes no time in disposing with Giugliano at Adelaide, he's up to 2nd.
11:04
UK Time
Melandri has made a fantastic start and is up to 4th, making up 3 places already.
11:04
UK Time
As the lights go out Sykes gets the jump into T1 ahead of Giugliano and Guintoli.
11:00
UK Time
The grid lines up as: Sykes, Guintoli, Giugliano – Laverty, Fabrizio, Badovini – Melandri, Davies, Philippe – Pirro, Elias, Cluzel – Salom, Lanzi, Haslam
10:59
UK Time
And just to note both Fabrizio and Salom continue to deputise for the injured Rea and Baz in the Honda and Kawasaki camps.
10:58
UK Time
The impressive Niccolo Canepa is back on Superstock duty this weekend so Michele Pirro partners Badovini in the Alstare Ducati squad. He heads the 4th row in 10th.
10:58
UK Time
8-time World Endurance champ Vincent Philippe takes Leon Camiers place and teams up with countryman Cluzel in the Fixi Cresent Suzuki team. He starts from 9th.
10:57
UK Time
Amid intense speculation regarding where he'll ride next year, Chaz Davies qualified 8th. Paddock rumours suggest he'll be aboard a Ducati in the WSBK championship next year.
10:56
UK Time
Melandri has his work cut out starting from 7th although he proved last weekend he can mix it at the front no matter where his starting position is.
10:55
UK Time
Fabrizio and Badovini complete row 2 in 5th and 6th.
10:54
UK Time
Eugene Laverty was on course for a cracking qualifying time before he saw spots of rain on his visor and backed off. He heads row 2 in 4th.
10:53
UK Time
The surprise package of Laguna Seca Davide Giugliano rounds out the front row in 3rd.
10:52
UK Time
Conditions are much improved from this morning though and it looks like we are going to have a dry first race.
10:51
UK Time
Fittingly the top 4 in the championship headed this morning’s warm up session with Sykes leading Guintoli home by 0.14secs.
10:50
UK Time
He nipped ahead of home rider Guintoli in yesterday's damp Superpole session, the Frenchman starts 2nd. Both riders shared the spoils here last year with a win apiece.
10:48
UK Time
Sykes returns to the scene where he lost the 2012 championship by ½ a point to start from his 8th pole of the year.
10:46
UK Time
Guintoli and Melandri still have a fighting chance but both recognise a good French round is crucial to their title hopes.
10:44
UK Time
Eugene Laverty is the form rider in the series winning 3 of the last 4 races and his 3rd & 1st place finishes in the USA place him 2nd in the standings, 23 points behind Tom Sykes.
10:42
UK Time
After 2 brilliant races at Laguna Seca last weekend 42 points cover the top 4 in the series with 100 to play for.
10:40
UK Time
As we begin the penultimate round of the series there are still four riders who could potentially claim the title for the first time.
10:38
UK Time
Welcome to Crash.net’s live coverage of the 13th round of the World Superbike championship from Magny Cours.

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