Checa sets early pace in France

The Spaniard needs just three points to secure the 2011 World Superbike Championship title for the first time.
On the weekend he is likely to be crowned 2011 World Superbike Champion, Carlos Checa began his quest in the best way possible by topping first free practice at Magny-Cours.

The Spaniard needs just a 13th place finish from either race in France to confirm the inevitable, though he insists he will be aiming higher when action gets underway so as to win it in style.

For the moment, Checa set the early pace in FP1 with a 1min 39.013secs lap time, just over a tenth faster than the in-form Tom Sykes on the best of the Kawasakis.

He headed up BMW duo Troy Corser and Leon Haslam, who looked on course for a 1-2 at one stage after a strong brace of late laps, only for Checa and Sykes to sneak ahead before the chequered flag fell.

Jakub Smrz produced the fifth best time for Effenbert-Liberty Ducati, with Eugene Laverty, double Imola podium winner Noriyuki Haga, Joan Lascorz and Sylvain Guintoli completing the top ten.

Imola race winner Jonathan Rea got his weekend off to a quiet start in 11th place, while Leon Camier was 13th and Marco Melandri, the only man capable of denying Checa his likely title, 15th as he gets to grips with the French circuit.

Meanwhile, with a grid of just 19 riders this weekend, Ruben Xaus failed to set a time after crashing on his first flying lap and prompting a red flag period.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Melandri, Checa, French WSBK 2011
Rea, Checa, Imola WSBK Race 1 2011
Checa, Bevilacqua, Imola WSBK Race 2 2011
Checa, Imola WSBK Race 2 2011
Checa, Imola WSBK Race 2 2011
Checa, Imola WSBK Race 2 2011
Ducati pack up for long haul, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati pack up, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati pack up, Misano WSBK 2017
Melandri leather out to dry, Misano WSBK 2017
Melandri leather out to dry, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati pack up, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati pack up, Misano WSBK 2017
Gino Rea, WSS Race, Misano 2017
Gino Rea, WSS Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Jonathan Rea , Melandri and Sykes, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Melandri, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Sykes, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017

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Nick636 - Unregistered

September 30, 2011 4:30 PM

Would love to know Where these trolls have suddenly come up with this myth that the kwak has the best straight line speed. Have you people not been watchin this reason? Consistently, fastest have been aprilia and yam. Watch monza and aragon. Today has been yam and bmw. Also because max's bike's not here. Note. The bigger number means faster speed! Though i guess you probably know more about motorcycle racing than sykes. Maybe you should be riding...

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