Haga’s Winning Ways Return in Valencia
WSBK Race Report
After a disappointing loss to Ben Spies in last year’s World Superbike Championship and a slow to start to the 2010 season, Noriyuki Haga was finally back to his winning ways at Valencia over the weekend on his Ducati SBK.
Haga climbed to the top step of the podium with a fantastic victory in race 2. The Japanese rider took his career win total to 42 WSBK wins in Spain, and is very much back in contention for the title race with ten rounds to go.
Nitro Nori was visibly relieved to have won his first 2010 race, but he had to recover from a tough race one, in which he finished fifth.
Noriyuki Haga says: "The track was a lot warmer in Race 1 than in the morning’s warm-up and I was lacking rear grip. The more I pushed, the more my 1198 slid around and this needed to be fixed before Race 2. Before that race we made a change, reverting to the setting we’d used in the warm-up and it worked well. I was able to push hard, stick with Biaggi and Checa and eventually pass them. I’m very happy to have been able to win today."
After this third round, Noriyuki Haga now lies in fourth position in the overall standings, with 79 points. He trails Carlos Checa and his privateer Ducati by just one point for third position. Leading the points race is Haslam on the Suzuki followed by Biaggi on the Aprilia.
Championship standing (after 3 Rounds of 13): 1. Haslam 123; 2. Biaggi 105; 3. Checa 80; 4. Haga 79; 5. Rea 60; 6. Toseland 50; 7. Guintoli 50; 8. Fabrizio 46; 9. Corser 46; 10. Crutchlow 41
Manufacturers standing: 1. Suzuki 123; 2. Ducati 107; 3. Aprilia 105; 4. Honda 61; 5. Yamaha 57; 6. BMW 47; 7. Kawasaki 13