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Sofuoglu stays on course with victory

9 September 2012

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Kenan Sofuoglu needs just a top four finish from either of the next two races to seal his third World Supersport Championship title after claiming another accomplished win at the Nurburgring.

The Turk snatched the lead at the first bend from fourth position on the grid and proceeded to resist the race-long attentions to Jules Cluzel to claim a fourth victory that moves him within touching distance of another championship win with two rounds to go.

Indeed, though the race was mostly a four-way tussle for the win with Fabien Foret and Sam Lowes also getting involved up at the front, it was only Cluzel who looked a convincing match for Sofuoglu.

The Frenchman even nosed ahead with a bold pass at turn 11 with three laps remaining, but Sofuoglu simply retook the lead at the next corner and was never headed thereafter.

It means he needs just a fourth place finish for 13 points next time out at Portimao to seal his third WSS title and Kawasaki's first since Andrew Pitt was triumphant for them in 2001.

As it stands, Cluzel is now the only rider mathematically capable of denying Sofuoglu the title as Foret's run to third place wasn't enough to keep him in the hunt, while Lowes's hopes were left in tatters when he crashed out with two laps remaining.

Prior to his fall, Lowes was in the midst of an exciting battle with Foret for the final spot on the podium, but after running wide into turn one, the loss of momentum contributed to him coming down at turn three just seconds later. Though he remounted, he could only cross the line 13th, a result that also drops him to fourth in the standings.

Having run at the front early on, Broc Parkes fell away to finish a lonely fourth, while Vladimir Leonov was fifth across the line, only to be disqualified for technical infringements.

His exclusion promotes Alex Baldolini up to fifth, while Gabor Talmacsi notched up another strong top ten finish in sixth place, ahead of Vittorio Iannuzzo and wild-card racer David Linortner, the Austrian riding an impressive race to claim eighth.

Ronan Quarmby crossed the line ninth, ahead of Massimo Roccoli on the PATA by Martini Yamaha, Romain Lanusse, Florian Marino, the recovering Lowes, Andrea Antonelli and Jed Metcher.

Elsewhere, there was frustration for Dan Linfoot, the Briton getting up into the top ten aboard the MSD RN Kawasaki before crashing out.


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