Honda Super Bike Pata Racing Team
Second at Misano maintains van der Mark's championship challenge
Pata Honda’s World Supersport championship leader Michael van der Mark finished second in today’s seventh-round race at Misano World Circuit ‘Marco Simoncelli’ in Italy, his sixth successive podium finish, which gives him a 28-point lead in the series as it enters the second half of the season.
The 21-year-old Dutch rider got a good start from the front row of the grid but his race almost ended at the beginning of lap three when another rider ran wide at Misano’s first turn and re-joined the track, almost colliding with van der Mark. The Pata Honda rider took evasive action but lost a position before beginning a charge back to race leader and eventual winner Jules Cluzel.
Van der Mark’s Pata Honda team-mate Lorenzo Zanetti was in the leading group for the early part of the race and held a lonely fifth place for 12 of the 19 laps around the 4.226km Misano circuit. The Italian ace, 26, dropped back to sixth at the flag to match his grid position but moves up to fourth place in the championship standings with five rounds to go.
Michael van der Mark 2nd
We’ve had a really good weekend. We didn’t come last year with World Supersport but right from the start the bike was working really well. We improved every session and today I had a good pace. The start was OK and I was running third but after two laps, another rider ran wide and, in my opinion, he should have rejoined the track from the safety road. We almost touched and then Jacobsen passed me. When I got back to second position I tried to chase Jules [Cluzel] but he was really fast and made a perfect race. It would have been nice to stay with him from the beginning and have a nice fight - I tried everything to get to him but it wasn’t possible. I think overall we have worked really hard for the weekend and now I’m looking forward to Portimao which I think will suit me and the bike.
Lorenzo Zanetti - 6th
I’m not really happy because my reaction at the start was OK, but I wheelied a bit and lost some positions. Then I got stopped a couple of times by a championship rival and I lost maybe two seconds on the first lap. When I was by myself I had a good rhythm but I pushed too hard to re-join the front group and used up the tyre too early. This is racing but I am disappointed because I really wanted to fight for the podium here at Misano. I’m looking forward to Portimao, even though it’s probably my worst track of the season. I want to fight there as well because I need podiums to be able to challenge in the championship.
Pieter Breddels -Technical coordinator
Lorenzo got held up a bit at the start of the race and then could not catch the leading group although he was matching their times. For sure, he will be looking to get to the podium next time. For Michael, the whole weekend was good. He, too, was held up at the beginning of the race and then, when he had clear track, he started to close on Cluzel. In the end he had to let him go but he brought it home in second which was really good.