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Gino Rea breaks WSS duck at Brno
10 July 2011
Gino Rea can call himself a World Supersport Championship race winner after concluding a marvellous weekend with a fighting victory at Brno.
The young Briton has endured a trying sophomore WSS campaign, with a series of accidents and technical issues on his Step Racing Honda keeping him down in the overall standings, but having shown front running pace from the start of the Brno weekend, he was able to translate that speed into the race.
Starting from the front row of the grid for the first time this season, Rea pushed his way into the lead at the first corner, though pole sitter Fabien Foret would snatch it back by turn three.
Proceeding to trail the Frenchman over the opening five laps, Rea grabbed the initiative from his experienced rival on lap six and would simply hold the position to the chequered flag.
An impressive display, not least because the front runners would remain fairly closely matched throughout the race, Rea's cause was aided by the race being declared with three laps remaining when a red flag was deployed due to an accident involving Robbin Harms, the Dane's Honda depositing a dangerous amount of oil on the circuit in the process.
Denying Foret the chance to launch a last gasp attack, just as he did at Brno in 2009 when he was last a WSS race winner, it allowed Rea to celebrate a well-deserved first victory, while it also signals a magnificent home triumph for the Ukrainian-backed, Czech-based Step Racing team (formerly Intermoto Czech)
Despite missing out on victory, a fourth podium in five races moves Foret up to joint second in the overall standings, 36 points behind Chaz Davies, who came through to finish in third.
The Welshman has struggled throughout the weekend, but came good when it mattered to gradually work his way up the order and secure third place.
A further reward for his charge came when Broc Parkes suffered his second fall in two races, the Australian leaving Brno now level with Foret on 85 points to Davies's 121.
David Salom crossed the line fourth to keep himself in the title hunt, just a single point behind Foret and Parkes now, while Roberto Tamburini prevailed in an entertaining scrap with Sam Lowes to claim a top five finish on the Bike Service Yamaha.
Behind Lowes, former championship leader Luca Scassa completed a fairly ordinary weekend in seventh position, while James Ellison capitalised on Harms's retirement from eighth to assume that position at the chequered flag. Florian Marino finished ninth, while Vittorio Iannuzzo snared a top ten finish after Miguel Praia and Ondrej Jezek crashed out late on.
A race of fairly high attrition, Danilo Dell'Omo scored points for the Suriano Triumph team in 11th, ahead of Alexander Lundh, Imre Toth, Luca Marconi (scoring his first points) and Massimo Roccoli, who recovered to 15th after an earlier fall.
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