Alex Lowes has revealed he was ‘physically sick’ during the first World Superbike Championship race at Imola, the Briton soldiering on regardless to secure points that he described as his ‘best ever’ given the rather unfortunate circumstances.

Feeling unwell coming into the event on Friday due to a sickness virus, Lowes’ condition proceeded to worsen at critical moments of the weekend, the Briton saying he felt worst after Superpole and ahead of first race.

Despite this, Lowes placed the Yamaha R1 fifth on the grid – ahead of Michael van der Mark – and ran as high as fourth before a mid-race ‘incident’ on the bike forced him to slip back. Despite this, Lowes battled on to record a seventh-place result, describing it as the ‘best nine points’ he has ever managed.

“Given my condition I'm really relieved to have come away from that race with a top ten finish and nine points because, after qualifying, I was feeling the worst that I've felt all weekend. I didn't feel any better ahead of the race, so I knew I was going to run out of energy at some point, but I didn't expect to be physically sick during the race on top of everything else!

“I just did the best that I could under the circumstances, and these probably count as the best nine points I've ever scored.”

Feeling brighter on Sunday, Lowes secured a well-deserved fifth in the Superpole race behind Michael van der Mark, a brace of results he was delighted with at what he described as Yamaha’s ‘worst track’ last year.

“The bike felt great in the Superpole race. I had a good battle with the Leon and Toprak in the early stages of the race, before pulling a bit of a gap on them. My best laps were near the end of the race and I felt that, maybe, if I'd have got clear sooner then I might have been able to have a good battle with Michael.

“For us to finish fourth and fifth on what has previously been a tough track for us shows just how much we've improved. It gives me a lot of confidence going forward, now that we've been so competitive at what was probably our worst track last year.”

Lowes retains third in the overall standings, six points ahead of van der Mark.



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