2014 Sepang Superbike Superpole Results
The 2014 World Superbike Championship makes its debut this weekend at the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia.
And though many on Sunday’s 27-rider grid never rode at Sepang, one pilot has vast experience there – Aprilia Racing Team’s Sylvain Guintoli. The Frenchman had competed at the venue during his tenure in Grand Prix racing last decade.
And this likely helped the 31-year old RSV4 pilot earn the Superpole win Saturday. The track also caters to the RSV4 due to the two long straights at the 3.44-mile circuit containing 15 corners.
When Superpole 2 began under 95-degree temperatures, Guintoli immediately took the lead with an impressive run of 2:03.581. But after returning to the pits and putting on a qualifying Pirelli tires, Guintoli, who also led three of four free practices, improved to a 2:03.002, which was his fastest lap and also the Best Lap at Sepang.
Joining Guintoli on the front row is the current points leader, Kawasaki Racing’s Tom Sykes, and Ducati Superbike Team’s Davide Giugliano. Sykes finished 0.106 of a second off the pace, and Giugliano 0.0135 of a second back. Delivering the top-three qualifying trophies was five-time 500cc champion Mick Doohan.
Sylvain Guintoli says “This has been an almost perfect weekend so far even if the results tomorrow are the ones that really count. I have trained well, preparing for the high heat, and I actually feel better on a race tire than on a qualifier.
“I’m very happy with how well the RSV4 is performing here – we are really able to take full advantage of it. I’m having fun riding and the two races tomorrow will definitely be hard but I can’t wait to get on the track.”
Heading up the second row is Red Devils Roma Aprilia’s Toni Elias, who was closest to the front row. Elias was only 0.158 of a second behind Guintoli, and the final rider within 0.2 of a second of the leader.
Joining Elias on the second row is Aprilia Racing Team’s Marco Melandri, who was 0.969 of a second back, and Kawasaki Racing Team’s Loris Baz. The ZX-10R Ninja pilot was a potential pole qualifier, but crashed out.
Qualifying on the third row is Voltcom Crescent Suzuki’s Eugene Laverity, Ducati Superbike’s Chaz Davies and Voltcom Crescent Suzuki’s Alex Lowes. As for the top EVO rider, Kawasaki Racing Team’s David Salom qualified 12th.
The grid will return to the Sepang Circuit Sunday for two 16-lap races. As the series heads to round six of 13, Sykes has 185 points, 26 ahead of Rea and Baz, who are tied in second. Guintoli is in fourth, 37 points back.
2014 Sepang World Superbike on TV
beIN Sports will broadcast Sepang World SBK with live coverage beginning at midnight ET Sunday, June 8.
2014 Sepang World Superbike Superpole Results:
1. Sylvain Guintoli, France, Aprilia Racing RSV4
2. Tom Sykes, UK, Kawasaki Racing ZX-10R
3. Davide Giugliano, Italy, Ducati SBK 1199 Panigale R
4. Toni Elias, Spain, Red Devils Roma Aprilia RSV4
5. Marco Melandri, Italy, Aprilia Racing RSV4
6. Loris Baz, France, Kawasaki Racing ZX-10R
7. Eugene Laverty, Ireland, Voltcom Crescent Suzuki GSX-R1000
8. Chaz Davies, UK, Ducati SBK 1199 Panigale R
9. Alex Lowes UK, Voltcom Crescent Suzuki GSX-R1000
10. Jonathan Rea, UK, PATA Honda CBR1000RR
11. Leon Haslam, UK, PATA Honda CBR1000RR
12. David Salom Spain, Kawasaki Racing ZX-10R
13. Niccolo Canepa, Italy, Althea Ducati 1199 Panigale R
14. Claudio Corti, Italy, MV Agusta RC F4RR
15. Christian Iddon, UK, Bimota Alstare BB3
16. Leon Camier, UK, BMW Italia S1000RR
17. Sheridan Morais, Russia, IRON BRAIN Kawasaki ZX-10R
18. Ayrton Badovini, Italy, Bimota Alstare BB3
19. Fabien Foret, France, MAHI Kawasaki ZX-10R
20. Jeremy Guarnoni, France, MRS Kawasaki ZX-10R
21. Alessandro Andreozzi, Italy, Pedercini Kawasaki ZX-10R
22. Romain Lanusse, France, Pedercini Kawasaki ZX-10R
23. Bryan Staring, Australia, IRON BRAIN Kawasaki ZX-10R
24. Imre Toth, Hungary, Team Toth BMW S1000RR
25. Peter Sebestyen, Hungary, Team Toth BMW S1000RR
26. Geoff May, USA, Team Hero EBR 1190RX
27. Aaron Yates, USA, Team Hero EBR 1190RX