Michel Fabrizio has taken his first World Superbike Championship victory after benefitting from a problem for Ben Spies, who dramatically slowed on the final corner whilst leading at Monza.
Having led for the majority of the race, the American looked set for victory heading into the last lap of the race after shaking off the advances of Fabrizio and Noriyuki Haga, but was forced to coast across the finish line in 15th when his Yamaha slowed down suddenly through the Parabolica, just metres from the finish line
Despite the fortuitous circumstances surrounding the win, Fabrizio's maiden triumph remains a worthy one having led in the early stages of the race before developing a small gearing problem that dropped him behind Spies and Haga.
Nonetheless, Fabrizio worked his way around the problem and stalked his way back into contention, dicing with team-mate Haga before launching an assault on Spies and passing for the lead with three laps to go.
However, Spies struck back one lap later to grab an advantage he thought would be good enough to carry him to the finish line.
Fabrizio still had to work hard for what would become the win, going head-to-head with Haga once again and pulling off an audacious – and crucial – move on him at Ascari with just over a lap to go.
The race itself was a restart following a terrifying accident involving five riders at the initial getaway. Prompted by contact between several riders, both Makoto Tamada
and Brendan Roberts were forced onto the grass, where they subsequently fell heavily.
However, Roberts' errant Guandalini Ducati would continue skating across the grass and into the path of the other riders rounding the opening chicane where it would proceed to eliminate Max Neukirchner, who was leading at that stage. Early reports have indicated that Neukirchner has sustained a leg injury.
Further back, Tommy Hill and Troy Corser
also came to grief in the mid-pack, with one of the bikes subsequently catching fire.