Laverty slams red flag rule change

Eugene Laverty slams the new-for-2012 red flag ruling following the confusion that occurred following the curtailed Silverstone race.
Eugene Laverty feels World Superbike organisers should revise rules which determine the finishing order once a race-concluding red flag has been shown after missing out on a podium at Silverstone.

The Irishman believed he had finished in at least third position when the second WSBK race at Silverstone was halted at the mid-way point due to adverse conditions, Laverty having overtaken a retired Jakub Smrz well before the red flag was shown.

However, the result would be declared with Loris Baz and Smrz in second and third positions, despite both riders having fallen out of the race before it was stopped.

In the past, rules have stated that those not on a bike at the time of the stoppage cannot be classified in the final results, though this was amended for 2012. However, while Laverty accepts the ruling that the results be determined by the order from the last completed lap (hence why Baz was classified in second), he could not understand why Smrz was reinstated since he fell two laps before the race was called.

Laverty wasn't the only rider to lose out in the case of the new ruling, with Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri dropped from a potential third and fourth to seventh and eighth when Baz, Smrz, Carlos Checa and Maxime Berger were all reinstated ahead of them, despite each having retired by the time the race was stopped.

“I should have stood on the podium at the last three races but for one reason or another I missed out. I really enjoyed riding in the rain at Silverstone in race two as I have a very good feeling for the RSV4 in the wet conditions.

“Jakub Smrz and Loris Baz made mistakes, ended up in the gravel trap and then made their way onto the podium! There was a rule change over the winter allowing riders no longer in the race to be classified in the case of a red flag.

“I warned the organisers that this was a bad idea at the start of the season but rules are rules so I had no problem with Loris Baz finishing on the podium. However, the organisers made an error and placed Jakub Smrz in 3rd even though he'd crashed two laps before! That sort of thing should not happen in World Championship racing.”

Indeed, Laverty feels it is a rule that can be manipulated to benefit those who have crashed, jokingly pointing out that he should have attempted to get the second Moscow race stopped in order to maintain his third place after crashing on the final lap.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Laverty, Russian WSBK Race 2 2012
Laverty, Russian WSBK Race 2 2012
Laverty, Russian WSBK Race 2 2012
Davies, Laverty, Russian WSBK Race 1 2012
Laverty, Russian WSBK 2012
Laverty, British WSBK Race 2 2012
Andrea Petricca, Red Devils Aprilia team boss, Jerez WSBK/MotoGP test, November 2014
Baz, Qatar WSBK race 1 2014
Eugene Laverty, Qatar WSBK race2 2014
Eugene Laverty, Qatar WSBK race2 2014
Baz, Giuntoli and Sykes, Qatar WSBK race 1 2014
Eugene Laverty, Qatar WSBK race 1 2014
Eugene Laverty, Qatar WSBK race1 2014
Eugene Laverty, Qatar WSBK race1 2014
Baz, Qatar WSBK race 1 2014
Eugene Laverty, Qatar WSBK race1 2014
Eugene Laverty, Qatar WSBK race1 2014
Eugene Laverty, Qatar WSBK race1 2014

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Sick Cylinder - Unregistered

September 06, 2012 11:06 AM

Agree with Nick and Cubikrube. I presume the organisers of WSBK have not been watching racing for as long as I have! So a short history lesson for them! The rule that only riders who have not fallen from their machines can be classified as race finishers was introduced for safety reasons following a series of incidents where riders who had fallen deliberately lay on the track in order to get races stopped. I am pretty sure that the last time I saw this happen was in a World Supersport race at Brands Hatch when Fabien Foret (who used to look behind him more than he looked in front)fell while looking behind then lay on the track, despite being uninjured in order to force a re-start / race stoppage. I don't understand why the organisers would change from a safe and fair system to a new system which is clearly unsafe and could as Laverty has suggested lead to riders feigning injury and remaining on track to force a race stoppage. The simple and previously effective rule is that if you

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