Melandri Takes First World Superbike Victory

Marco_Melandri_Donington_ParkMarco Melandri is no rookie, but the MotoGP veteran is in his first year in the World Superbike series. Melandri took his first WSBK victory today during the second round of the 2011 World Superbike series at Donington Park.

Melandri had a large task today as he started from 9th place, but he gradually made his way through the pack until he was riding in second behind Jakub Smrz. Smrz led for 17 of the 23 laps today, but a late charge by Melandri denied him his first World Superbike win.

A small crash dropped Carlos Checa from the front to the middle of the pack at the beginning of the race, but the double Phillip Island winner was still able to claim the final spot on the podium.

Leon Haslam finished in fourth, while Jonathan Rea, Noriyuki Haga, and Max Biaggi all battled to the wire for fifth place. Rea would cross the line first, beating Haga and Biaggi by less than a second.

World Superbike Race Results – Donington Park Race 1

  1. M. Melandri
  2. J. Smrz
  3. C. Checa
  4. L. Haslam
  5. J. Rea
  6. N. Haga
  7. M. Biaggi
  8. L. Camier
  9. T. Corser
  10. J. Lascorz

Courtesy of

Checa Claims Pole Position

Carlos_Checa_at_Donington_ParkCarlos Checa will be starting the Donington Park race in the number one spot after winning superpole today ahead of Leon Haslam and Tom Sykes. Checa is coming off of a double victory at Phillip Island, and has now set himself up for another victory at Donington Park.

Behind Checa, Haslam and Sykes delighted the British crowd. The two Brits had a fantastic qualifying, but were not able to top Checa’s 1’28.099 lap time in front of their home fans. The final spot on the front row of the grid will be occupied by Jakub Smrz.


Noriyuki Haga will start row two, and will be followed by Max Biaggi. Biaggi was fastest during the preliminary qualifying sessions, and finished in second at both races at Phillip Island. The 2010 champ will have to start from the second grow tomorrow as he tries to overtake Checa.

Leon Camier and Jonathan Rea will finish out the second row.

World Superbike – Qualifying Results

Row 1 – Checa, Haslam, Sykes, Smrz
Row 2 – Haga, Biaggi, Camier, Rea

Courtesy of

Biaggi Stays on Top During Q2

biaggi_donington_parkIt was a cold morning at Donington Park, and most of the World Superbike grid was unable to better their times from the first qualifying session. With a relatively slow second qualifying session, Max Biaggi was able to retain the top spot.

The top five riders from the first qualifying remained unchanged. Jonathan Rea, however, was able to better his time to take the 6th place spot from Leon Haslam.

Tom Sykes was also able to better his time to claim 9th. The World Superbike riders will decide the grid positions later today with the Superpole event.

World Superbike – 2nd Qualifying Session Results

  1. M. Biaggi
  2. M. Melandri
  3. C. Checa
  4. E. Laverty
  5. J. Smrz
  6. J. Rea
  7. L. Haslam
  8. T. Corser
  9. T. Sykes
  10. M. Berger

Courtesy of

Checa Satisfied With Friday Results From Donington Park

carlos_checa_donington_park_2Carlos Checa (Althea Racing), riding the Ducati 1198 for the first time at Donington Park today, was happy to close first qualifying for the second round of the World Superbike Championship in third position.

In the morning’s first practice session and in unexpectedly sunny conditions, Althea Racing’s Carlos Checa went to the top of the timesheets and stayed there for much of the sixty minute session. He was able to find good rhythm and continued to lower his lap times before registering the best lap of the session right in the final minutes. Checa was the only rider to duck under 1m30 this morning, with a best of 1m29.978.

Later in the afternoon, and on a slightly warmer track (22˚C), the Spanish rider continued to make good progress during first qualifying. His technicians lost a few minutes during the session when they had to resolve a small problem with the handlebar but, with this fixed, Carlos started to push, recording some consistently fast lap times in the process. He was able to improve on his morning’s best time by an impressive eight tenths of a second, to close first qualifying in third position which bodes very well for tomorrow’s Superpole.

Carlos Checa

“This is the first time I’ve ridden the 1198 at Donington and so I’m quite satisfied with the third place obtained today. We still have work to do tomorrow of course, mainly on my speed through certain sections of the track because I’m losing a couple of tenths to the leaders and we need to solve that. The important thing here though is to be consistent and we’re doing fairly well in that respect. I’d say that there will be five or six riders fighting at the front on Sunday and I hope to be part of that group. Tomorrow the work continues, we’ll try to improve stability and braking but all in all I can say we’re feeling quite confident.”

The new-look version of Carlos Checa’s web site was launched today and is available in Spanish, English and soon Italian.

World Superbike 1st Qualifying Results – Donington Park

1. Biaggi (Aprilia) 1’28.7; 2. Melandri (Yamaha) 1’28.8; 3. Checa (Ducati) 1’29.1; 4. Laverty (Yamaha) 1’29.3; 5. Smrz (Ducati) 1’29.3; 6. Haslam (BMW) 1’29.4; 7. Corser (BMW) 1’29.4; 8. Xaus (Honda) 1’29.6

[Press Release and Photo Courtesy of Althea Racing]

Biaggi Beats Melandri for Provisional Pole

max_biaggiOnly two riders recorded times below the 1’29 mark during the first qualifying session at Donington Park. 2010 World Superbike champion Max Biaggi beat out Marco Melandri to claim the provisional pole.

Carlos Checa, who was fastest during the free practice session, was on pace to keep up with the two Italians, but a few late session laps left the Phillip Island winner clinging to third.

Eugene Laverty was the final rider to end on the provisional front row.

World Superbike 1st Qualifying Results – Donington Park

  1. M. Biaggi
  2. M. Melandri
  3. C. Checa
  4. E. Laverty
  5. J. Smrz
  6. L. Haslam
  7. T. Corser
  8. R. Xaus
  9. J. Lascorz
  10. L. Camier

Courtesy of