2013 Jerez World Superbike Race One Result: Moments Of Brilliance
Twenty one laps of a dry race at Jerez, after a damp Superstock race, would not be the most exciting race for the most part, but moments of absolute brilliance shone through.
Eugene Laverty led from the lights, followed by Tom Sykes, but Marco Melandri took second place very quickly, leaving Sykes to fend off Sylvain Guintoli for third. Toni Elias took fifth off Davide Giugliano and the race was set for a good few laps, with no rider changing positions for over a dozen laps.
Eugene Laverty and Marco Melandri broke away from Tom Sykes and Sylvain Guintoli. Nine laps in, Melandri made a play for the lead, went wide but was able to close back in on Laverty in a matter of corners.
Honda’s weekend got worse as Leon Haslam pulled in to his garage after his bike stopped behaving, while Michel Fabrizio would finish out of the points in seventeenth place. Toni Elias and Davide Giugliano would spend their race watching the riders in front of them get slowly further away while the gaps behind them grew, ending in fifth and sixth pace, the positions they settled into on the first lap, in spite of valiant efforts to catch the escaping group ahead.
Sylvain Guintoli in fourth place would also look ahead to Tom Sykes, who needed to finish third to cement his championship place, but the Englishman’s pace was enough to keep him at bay.
The race woke up a few laps from the end as Marco Melandri closed the gap to Eugene Laverty to under three tenths of a second and made plenty of practices for a pass that showed that he knew he could pass Laverty for the win.
On the last lap, while Tom Sykes had a nervous ride knowing he just had to finish where he was to be crowned, not dropping his pace, but not making a mistake, Marco Melandri made his move.
Melandri took the inside line of the hairpin and just released the brake a little, pushing into a gap that was barely there, and forcing both riders to go wide, with Laverty riding outside the white line, well into the run off, and Melandri recovering from a deliberately botched corner in front. Melandri looked like he had the pace and the line for the win, heading into the last corner in a clean defensive position, braking carefully, covering any chance of an overtake in textbook fashion.
Eugene Laverty got the right geat at the right revs in the right place to have incredible drive toward the last corner and, seeing Melandri sit up to brake, made a decision to go round the outside and cut in front of Melandri on the exit, making an impossible overtake that somehow worked.
Melandri’s clean drive to the line was disrupted and he saw a very fast Aprilia where he should have seen clean air to the flag and watched his 100th podium turn into a second where he thought he had victory.
Eugene Laverty’s superhuman effort to win was not rewarded in the way he had hoped as Tom Sykes crossed the line in third place and destroyed any chance the Irishman had to keep the title fight alive.
Tom Sykes won the 2013 World Superbike title and, after his victory lap, he described how he may have shed a few tears and was shaking like a … euphemism he decided not to finish.
|1||58||E. LAVERTY||Aprilia RSV4 Factory||1'42.055||281,9|
|2||33||M. MELANDRI||BMW S1000 RR||0.218||1'41.958||282,6|
|3||66||T. SYKES||Kawasaki ZX-10R||6.681||1'42.129||279,0|
|4||50||S. GUINTOLI||Aprilia RSV4 Factory||9.327||1'42.205||281,1|
|5||24||T. ELIAS||Aprilia RSV4 Factory||20.446||1'42.323||281,1|
|6||34||D. GIUGLIANO||Aprilia RSV4 Factory||27.633||1'42.837||274,8|
|7||19||C. DAVIES||BMW S1000 RR||28.621||1'42.920||276,9|
|8||2||L. CAMIER||Suzuki GSX-R1000||29.548||1'43.096||274,8|
|9||12||X. FORES||Ducati 1199 Panigale R||29.964||1'43.436||273,4|
|10||8||M. AITCHISON||Kawasaki ZX-10R||36.981||1'43.411||277,6|
|11||16||J. CLUZEL||Suzuki GSX-R1000||37.008||1'43.295||277,6|
|12||20||S. BARRIER||BMW S1000 RR||43.179||1'43.873||278,3|
|13||86||A. BADOVINI||Ducati 1199 Panigale R||47.260||1'43.559||274,1|
|14||27||M. NEUKIRCHNER||Ducati 1199 Panigale R||52.154||1'44.254||272,0|
|15||57||L. LANZI||Ducati 1098R||52.912||1'43.937||268,7|
|16||23||F. SANDI||Kawasaki ZX-10R||54.414||1'43.634||275,5|
|17||84||M. FABRIZIO||Honda CBR1000RR||1'02.109||1'44.435||274,8|
|18||70||B. PARKES||Yamaha YZF R1||1'02.568||1'44.002||266,0|
|19||31||V. IANNUZZO||BMW S1000 RR||6 Laps||1'46.642||267,4|
|RET||91||L. HASLAM||Honda CBR1000RR||8 Laps||1'43.886||276,9|