Fourth victory in a row for Aegerter and Ten Kate Racing in Estoril, Taccini scores points again
Dominique Aegerter won the first World Supersport race of the Estoril Round in Estoril on Saturday. It is the fourth consecutive WorldSSP victory for the Ten Kate Racing rider. Ten Kate Racing teammate Leonardo Taccini finished fourteenth in this first race of the weekend.
The third round of the FIM Supersport World Championship is being held this weekend at Circuito Estoril in Portugal. During qualifying Dominique Aegerter already showed that he is still in top form by claiming pole. The Swiss rider recorded a fastest lap of 1’39.406, a new all-time lap record and with this fast lap the Ten Kate Racing rider was over 0.8 seconds faster than the number two in this session. For Leonardo Taccini it was already clear that this Portuguese weekend was going to be a difficult and demanding one, as he underwent arm pump surgery just seven days before the event. The Italian withstood the pain during the first two days and qualified twenty-third on Saturday morning for the two races this weekend.
Starting from pole position, Aegerter had a slightly less than favourable start and entered the first corner in fourth place, only to take third place at the first lap. In the following laps, the front riders seemed to be quite evenly matched, but in the second part of the race Aegerter took control and once he was in the lead, he distanced himself from the chasing pack lap by lap. In the end, the Swiss ride crossed the finish line first after eighteen laps with a three second lead on the runner-up and scored his fourth consecutive WorldSSP victory.
Taccini also held his own in the first race of the weekend given the conditions. The Italian fought back the pain to finish fourteenth and add two important World Championship points to his tally.
Dominique Aegerter (P1): “It’s a perfect start to the weekend. Earlier today we managed to get pole position with a very fast and perfect lap. My start of the race wasn’t very good, but after I managed to take the lead and then a rider behind me crashed we managed to make a small gap. However, it was then not so easy to maintain my three second lead. It was hard to stay focused but we managed to do it. Most importantly, we scored another twenty-five points and increased our lead in the championship. I think we can say we have had a good start to the season, so I am looking forward to tomorrow’s race.”
Leonardo Taccini (P14): “It was clear beforehand that it would not be an easy weekend for me here in Portugal, this after I recently underwent arm pump surgery. But we managed to get through the first two days and I think we can be happy with this fourteenth place and the two World Championship points that go with it, something we didn’t expect after qualifying. The race was definitely not easy, not only because of the pain but also because the wound kept opening up. I will now have it looked at by the doctors in the medical centre, take good care of the wound and then get enough cooling and rest to be ready for tomorrow. Thanks to everyone for the good care and excellent help. We will go for it again tomorrow with the goal to score some World Championship points in the second race.”
Kervin Bos – Ten Kate Racing team manager: “A perfect start to the weekend we can say. Fantastic what Dominique has shown so far this weekend. Pole, a new lap record and also a fantastic race and victory. He built up the race wonderfully, peaked at the right moment in the race and put the fastest lap on the clock here too. Again, a great start to the weekend. Also, nothing but praise for Leonardo. He rode a great race considering the circumstances, a very tough race for him to finish with character. That is also one of the reasons why we have him in our team. He will now have to have the wound taken care of at it was partially opened during the race in order to be able to go again tomorrow. Hats off to him. On to tomorrow.”
Another win for Aegerter and Ten Kate Racing in Estoril, Taccini DNS
Dominique Aegerter and Ten Kate Racing have scored another victory on Sunday in Estoril. The Swiss rider was fastest on his Yamaha YZF-R6 in Race 2 of the Estoril Round as well, scoring his fifth win in the six races run so far. Teammate Leonardo Taccini did not start in Race 2 on Sunday afternoon due to a crash in the warm-up earlier in the day.
The third and final day of the Estoril Round took place under completely different conditions compared to the first two days. Heavy rain in the early morning meant that the warm-up sessions on Sunday morning were held on a wet track.
During the morning, however, it dried up and it looked like the races on Sunday could be held on a completely dry track. That ended up being untrue as a light drizzle ensured that the second World Supersport race of the weekend could be run on slicks albeit in very tricky conditions.
Dominique Aegerter started the race cautiously, giving up a few places from time to time, but after he fell back to the sixth position the Swiss rider only went forward in the second part of the race. Once in the lead, Aegerter immediately showed his class by making a small gap to the rest of the field and passing the finish line as the winner after eighteen laps.
For Leonardo Taccini, the day started with a setback. The Italian was one of the many riders who crashed on the wet track. Taccini hit his left shoulder hard. Despite a check-up at the medical centre revealed no fractures or injuries worth mentioning, the team decided not to allow Taccini to start in Race 2 for safety reasons.
Dominique Aegerter (P1): “It’s fantastic to win five races in a row. It was definitely not an easy race this time due to the conditions. It was drizzling for most of the race and it was difficult to find the limit, so the lap times were not great. But at the end of the race I took a bit more risk and managed to open up a small gap on the rest of the field and secure the 25 World Championship points. The guys did a great job again and gave me a great bike for these conditions, thanks for that. It’s now time to have a little party together here in Estoril tonight.”
Leonardo Taccini (DNS): “It’s obviously disappointing that we couldn’t take part in this second race. This morning in warm-up the conditions were very difficult and I had an unfortunate crash. I hit my shoulder hard, luckily nothing is broken, but it was just not responsible to start the race. Now I have to make sure I get fit and can start the next round in Misano without any obstacles.
Kervin Bos, Ten Kate Racing team manager: “It’s incredible to win five of the first six races of the season, we’ve only dropped five points so far. We can say it’s a fantastic start to the season for Dominique and the team. As for Leonardo, we kept him on the sidelines in this second race for safety reasons due to his crash in the warm-up. We know how tough he is, he won’t give up but this was the best option for now because in addition to his already injured right arm, he has now also suffered a serious impact to his left shoulder. We will do everything we can to get him fit for the start in Misano. Finally, I would like to thank the FIM for the start of our new joint ‘green’ project, a unique and ambitious project that we presented here in Estoril on Saturday.”
The next round of the FIM Supersport World Championship will be held at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli in Italy in three weeks’ time, on the weekend of 10-12 June.