PH2: SILVERSTONE WSB
There was another sporting event on this weekend, and nothing to do with athletics...
Leon Haslam, despite the threat of rain (as well as the rumours surrounding MotoGP refugee Ben Spies taking his BMW ride), got the holeshot at Silverstone only for the red flag to get waved after just a few corners. The restarted wet race saw the usual tyre gamble - whether to choose wets, slicks or inters.
remember him from Brno?) appeared up at the front end, once again demonstrating he has massive balls in dodgy conditions. Haslam hit the front again with Sykes and Baz behind.
After running onto the grass on lap one and rejoining dead last, Jonathan Rea looked on fire, carving up through the field while others struggled in the iffy conditions. As if the WSB paddock needed any reminding of Haslam's class, Leon continued to lead, while it was great to see Leon Camier on the Suzuki GSX-R1000 in the top five at last. Two wins last year for Checa at Silverstone should have warned the field when the Spaniard hit the front, but it seemed to catch them napping and he pulled out an almost instant lead. A few spots of rain mid-race seemed to distract the Spaniard and he eased off too much, allowing the chasing pack to catch and overtake him.
Haslam is brave at the best of times, but at his home track and with a point to prove Leon was braver than ever, taking the lead with five to go before more rain saw Baz throw caution to the wind and take the lead with Badovini, Fabrizio and Jonathan Rea. A crazy last lap saw Biaggi crash mid-way through the last lap, Baz win and Rea and Fabrizio crash after the flag!
The eventual start saw Sylvain Guintoli hit the front with Jakub Smrz behind and everyone else showing slightly more caution in the horrible conditions. With 10 laps to go, who should appear behind them? Good old Loriz Baz. In fairness to Baz, he rode like a demon and thoroughly deserved to do a double - so it was a shame he left it a lap too late to take the lead.
Despite crashing on what turned out to be the red flag lap, Baz was awarded second spot behind Guinters and with Smrz in third. Well, that was the final result; it took a while to decide as there was a fair degree of confusion immediately after the race!
In World Supersport, Brit Sam Lowes held off a determined challenge from Jules Cluzel for the whole race but unfortunately lost out to the Frenchman in the last lap. Second spot closed the championship gap to just 14 points between Lowes and leader Sofuoglu, so it wasn't a bad day's work.
1 Biaggi 274
2 Melandri 263.5
3 Sykes 222.5
4 Checa 220.5
5 Rea 203.5
Brit watch: (Race 1, Race 2)
Jonathan Rea: (4, 9)
Leon Haslam: (6, 17)
Eugene Laverty: (10,4 )
Tom Sykes: (8, 12)
Leon Camier: (DNF,DNF)
Chaz Davies (14, 7)