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Checa takes comfortable Phillip Island win

The Spaniard was never challenged for the win once he assumed the lead of the race on lap three.
Carlos Checa got his quest to win the 2011 World Superbike Championship title off to a superb start as an assured performance during the opening race at Phillip Island saw him take a comfortable win.

The Spaniard was in command for all but the opening two laps around the Australian circuit, Checa pushing past initial leader Eugene Laverty on lap three and never looking back.

A repeat of his 2010 win for Althea Ducati, though that feat was considered a surprise back then, his victory this year comes on a weekend in which he has topped each dry timed session.

An almost perfect performance by Checa, though he was beaten into the opening bends by Laverty – who used his outside line into turn one to nose ahead up the inside of turn two -, he simply reeled in the Irishman before planting his move for the lead on lap three at the Honda hairpin.

From here, Checa was untroubled, Laverty holding Max Biaggi at bay long enough for him to establish a buffer that wouldn't be breached all the way to the chequered flag.

Biaggi gave chase once he had dispatched Laverty for second on lap six, but he would eventually be forced to settle for a lonely second position, 4.3secs adrift. Despite this, second marks a solid start to the defence of Biaggi's WSBK crown.

With the top two scampering away, the battle for the final podium spot attracted much of the attention, with several riders vying for the position.

With Leon Haslam following Biaggi through to third on lap six, the Briton held firm but was never able to establish a margin over a chasing pack that consisted of Laverty, Marco Melandri, Jonathan Rea and Michel Fabrizio. Troy Corser and Noriyuki Haga had also been in the mix briefly, but would fade as the race progressed.

Far from feeling the effects of their respective injuries Melandri and Rea progressed past Laverty on laps ten and eleven for fourth and fifth, the Italian in particular marking his territory at Yamaha with a fairly aggressive pass on his team-mate at the hairpin.





Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Checa, Australian WSBK 2011
Checa, Australian WSBK 2011
Biaggi, Checa, Guintoli, Australian WSBK 2011
Checa, Australian WSBK 2011
Checa, Australian WSBK 2011
Camier, Race 2, U.S. WSBK 2014.
Melandri, Race 2, U.S. WSBK 2014.
Melandri, U.S. WSBK 2014.
Melandri, U.S. WSBK 2014.
Sykes, U.S. WSBK 2014.
Sykes, U.S. WSBK 2014.
Haslam, U.S. WSBK 2014.
Haslam, U.S. WSBK 2014.
Laverty, Race 2, U.S. WSBK 2014.
Tom Sykes - Kawasaki Racing
Rea, U.S. WSBK 2014.
Laverty, U.S. WSBK 2014.
Laverty, U.S. WSBK 2014.

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