The 2017 World Superbike Championship headed to America for the only time this season, the action taking placed at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca—home of the infamous Corkscrew.The usual battle was expected between the current points leader, Kawasaki Racing Team’s Jonathan Rea, his teammate Tom Sykes and Aruba.it Racing Ducati’s Chaz Davies.
Davies was seeking serious redemption following his two DNFs at Misano, one from a crash that left him with a fractured vertebrae. And he got it.The Welshman dominated race one, taking the win by 1.2 seconds ahead of Rea and 4.596 ahead of Sykes. During his victory lap, he held a flag with Nicky Hayden’s 69 on it.Davies would try to double at Laguna Seca WorldSBK, but had to settle for third behind Sykes and the winner Rea. Rea set a record lap of 1:23.275 at Laguna Seca, and finished 2.887 seconds ahead of Sykes. Rea also dedicated his win to the late Nicky Hayden.With his win ahead of the six-week summer break, Rea now has 341 points—59 ahead of Sykes. Davies is third with 226 points. Round 9 heads now to Germany’s Sachsenring Aug. 18-20.Following are the official WorldSBK Recaps:
2017 Laguna Seca WorldSBK Results, Race 1 Recap
At the GEICO US Round on Saturday afternoon in sunny conditions at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) recorded a superb win as he returned from his Misano injuries in style, whilst Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) and Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) were also on the podium.The leading three could not be caught by the rest of the field as they charged away at the head of the race over the opening laps, with Davies and Rea pulling away from pole man Sykes in the final third of the race. With Rea right on his tail Davies held his nerve over the last few laps to notch a superb Race 1 win as he put his back and thumb injuries from Round 7 firmly behind him.Davies celebrated the win by holding up a number 69 flag in tribute to the late Nicky Hayden, following the tragic recent passing of the Kentucky Kid.The Ducati rider’s final winning margin over Rea was 1.2s, with Sykes a further +4.596s behind his Northern Irish colleague in third place.After 25 exciting laps of the Laguna Seca track Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) crossed the line in fourth, with Xavi Fores (BARNI Racing Team) close behind him in fifth.Leon Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse), Jordi Torres (Althea BMW Racing Team), Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team), Leandro Mercado (IODARacing) and Lorenzo Savadori (Milwaukee Aprilia) completed the top ten.A special mention must go to Jake Gagne who got a chance to ride for the Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team, the American scoring a point to give the home fans something to cheer as they also fondly paid their own tributes to former Honda man Hayden.It was not a great day for Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) or Eugene Laverty (Milwaukee Aprilia) as they both crashed out, but they will each get a chance to make amends on Sunday.Indeed on Sunday at the #USWorldSBK round Race 2 will take place at 2pm local time (GMT -7) at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.
2017 Laguna Seca WorldSBK Results, Race 2 Recap
As the GEICO US Round drew to a close on Sunday afternoon at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca it was World Champion Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) who took the victory, with Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) and Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) also on the podium.Rea came from eighth on the grid to take a dominant win over the rest of the field with the KRT man beating his nearest challenger – teammate Sykes – by 2.887s, to open up a 59-point advantage at the head of the standings going into the summer break. It is the Northern Irishman’s second win at the American venue and he dedicated the victory to the late Nicky Hayden.Davies did his best to pursue Sykes for second place over the final laps but just could not catch the Yorkshireman and had to settle for third, following his comeback win in Race 1.Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) and Xavi Fores (BARNI Racing Team) completed the top five in the hot conditions at the spectacular Californian track.Eugene Laverty (Milwaukee Aprilia) bounced back immediately from his Race 1 DNF for a good sixth place finish, with another Aprilia equipped rider Leandro Mercado (IODARacing) in seventh.Lorenzo Savadori (Milwaukee Aprilia) was just behind Laverty and Mercado on the Aprilia RSV4 RF in eighth place, with the top ten completed by Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team colleagues Alex Lowes and Michael van der Mark.Raffaele de Rosa (Althea BMW Racing Team), Jordi Torres (Althea BMW Racing Team) and Ayrton Badovini (Grillini Racing Team) all suffered crashes, whilst there was an early retirement for Leon Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse).