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Sofuoglu rebuffs rookie Jacobsen to top test

18 February 2014

CLICK HERE to view the full Tuesday WSS times
CLICK HERE to view the combined WSS times over two days

Kenan Sofuoglu continued to hold sway at the top of the World Supersport timesheets as two-days of official pre-season testing came to a conclusion at Phillip Island.

The Turk proved the dominant force from start-to-finish, never once being headed in any session to finish the test comfortably ahead of his nearest rivals aboard the Mahi India Kawasaki.

Somewhat unexpectedly, his closest competition would come in the form of series newcomer PJ Jacobsen, the former British Superbike rider quickly getting to grips with both the Australian circuit and his Intermoto Kawasaki to keep the gap to Sofuoglu down to less than three tenths of a second.

The young American's efforts were enough to put him ahead of sophomore WSS contender Michael van der Mark on the PATA Honda, the Dutchman ending up third having never once strayed outside the top three despite suffering technical problems.

In fourth position, series returnee Jules Cluzel was finally given reason to smile as he battled through persistent technical issues on the Yakhnich MV Agusta to make a late leap up the order. As a measure of his difficult two days, the 2012 runner-up managed just 55 laps, compared with Sofuoglu's 137.

A session that would only come alive in the closing stages, Ratthapark Wilairot gave PTR Honda some good cheer following Jack Kennedy's injury-influenced withdrawal, the Thai rider turning in the fifth fastest time on the Core-backed CBR600RR despite more than one off-track moment.

Behind him, Kev Coghlan headed up the relatively small Yamaha contingent in sixth position, ahead of fellow YZF-R6 rider Fabio Menghi, while Vladimir Leonov, Roberto Tamburini and Lorenzo Zanetti completed the top ten.

On the combined timesheet compiled over the two days, the top nine riders is mirrored by the Tuesday timesheets here, with Jack Kennedy classified as tenth overall despite being ruled out of action on the second day due to his ankle injury. The Irishman is unlikely to make the first round later this week.


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