Fourth consecutive pole for Spies

Ben Spies is continuing to prove how difficult he is to beat over a single World Superbike lap after cruising to a fourth consecutive Superpole at Assen.

Maintaining his perfect qualification record so far this season, Spies was in imperious form around the Dutch circuit, mastering the iconic curves to smash another record and add to his Phillip Island, Losail and Valencia feats.

Having topped three of the four sessions so far this weekend, Spies was the big favourite for pole position come Superpole, but while Max Neukirchner set the standard with a new lap record in Q1, outstanding times in Q2 and then the deciding Q3 ensured it was the American that would eventually prevail.

Spies was, however, run relatively close by second place Jakub Smrz, who produced his third front row grid position of the season with a time just a tenth adrift of Spies and three tenths up on the next rider.

Indeed, Smrz was a full two tenths quicker than anyone else in the tricky final sector, although it wasn't quite enough for the Czech rider to score a famous pole position for the privateer Guandalini Ducati team.

Despite losing time by running wide at the final corner, Leon Haslam did enough to give Stiggy Racing their first front row starting position in Superbikes, a big boost for the team following John Hopkins accident in practice yesterday.

Indeed, although his effort of 1min 38.072secs, set early on in the session, was expected to be undercut by more than just Spies and Smrz, it was still more than good enough to see off attempts by a number of other riders, seemingly hurting from having used up their option tyres in the earlier sessions.

Regarding the title race, Noriyuki Haga remains a threat to Spies in fourth position, the Japanese rider never able to match Spies' single-lap pace, but no doubt confident he can repeat his double Valencia victory from the front row once again.

A quiet final session for most of the riders as the best times tailed off, Michel Fabrizio starts fifth, with Neukirchner fading to sixth having shown pole position challenging pace in Q1 and Q2. Having only just sneaked into the shootout, Carlos Checa and Tom Sykes will start seventh and eighth having been unable to progress any higher.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Spies, Dutch WSBK 2009
Girl, Misano WSBK 2017
Taylor, SSP300 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati pack up for long haul, Misano WSBK 2017
Empty Yamah garage,  Misano WSBK 2017
Yamaha pack up for long haul, Misano WSBK 2017
Rinaldi, Faccani and Scheib, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Faccani and Rinaldi, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Scheib, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Faccani, Rinaldi and Scheib, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Faccani, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Faccani, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Rinaldi, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Scheib, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Faccani, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Marino, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Razgatlioglu and Tamburini, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Rinaldi, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.

Dingo - Unregistered

April 25, 2009 3:05 PM

Good work from Spies but it's no formality as the last race showed. Fantastic work by Leon Haslam again...should be on a factory bike non of the ten kate boys are doing anything... and the bars been raised this year by Spies.. Go Leon!!!

© 1999 - 2017 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.