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May 24, 2014 - 04:20 PM
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Lowes Leads Donington WSB 2nd Row
Posted by: newsla on May 24, 2014 - 04:19 PM
Lowes Leads Donington WSB 2nd Row

Voltcom Crescent Suzuki’s Alex Lowes almost clinched Pole Position for his debut home race in the eni FIM Superbike World Championship at Donington Park in the UK, eventually qualifying fourth at the end of today’s Superpole.


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Eugene Laverty and Lowes – who lives locally to the circuit - got down to business with their Yoshimura-powered machines on a very wet Leicestershire circuit. A tentative start saw riders carefully-judging the track conditions, but with seven minutes to go the times began to come: Lowes initially took second position as the countdown struck five minutes, but with two minutes to go he set the fastest time of the day to hold provisional pole.

Bettering his lap again on his next attempt, but with other riders still on track, Lowes just missed the opportunity for a final flying lap; finishing the session with a time of 1’45.258 and lining-up at the front of the second row in fourth position for tomorrow's two races.

Laverty, who felt confident with his Suzuki machine in the morning’s free practice session, struggled to replicate the feeling for the afternoon’s Superpole, preventing him getting the best out of his GSX-R1000 in the wet conditions. The Irishman concluded the qualifying session frustrated with 10th place, but is determined to make it count come race day.

With just 15 minutes of track action the focus of the day, incessant rain greeted the riders for Superpole’s qualifying session as Ducati’s Davide Giugliano clinched the pole position - breaking the 1’44 barrier - with local rider Leon Haslam next in line.

Voltcom Crescent Suzuki‘s race day begins at 09:00hrs local time for tomorrow’s morning warm-up. The first slice of Sunday’s action is scheduled for 12:00hrs, with the second race being held at 15:00hrs. The team is hoping the strong support from the home crowd will spur-it-on for a successful showing at the Leicestershire track.

Alex Lowes:

“It was a tricky session with the wet conditions today. Obviously I’m disappointed not to be on the front-row for my home race but I’ve been pretty good all weekend and the Voltcom Crescent Suzuki has been working well. I’m looking forward to tomorrow whatever the conditions. Hopefully we can keep improving ready for the races and challenge at the front.”

Eugene Laverty:

“The bike felt ok in the wet session this morning but I had no feeling in the rear for Superpole; right when it counts the most. It looks like it could be a dry race tomorrow and the Suzuki GSX-R felt good in the dry on Friday. It will be tough starting from the fourth-row but I will give it my all!”

Paul Denning – Team Manager:

“I’m very happy for Alex and his crew to perform so strongly, not only today in the wet but all weekend so far. Fourth on the grid is a great position to start but he just got a little bit unlucky in getting the chequered flag while he was in pole position, with three of the fast guys still being out there improving their times. There is no question Alex could have found that extra three-tenths to be on pole given one-more lap but overall we’ve still got to be very pleased with the performance; and wet or dry, we’re looking forward to tomorrow. Eugene has got a lot of work to do from the fourth row, but I really think he has the capability to get in the battle with the front guys. He is frustrated with the result today and as a team we will try and turn that frustration into positive energy tomorrow and get the best result we possibly can.”

Donington – eni FIM Superbike World Championship – Superpole: 1. Davide Giugliano (Ducati) 1’44.903; 2. Leon Haslam (Honda) +0.106; 3.Marco Melandri (Aprilia) +0.208; 4. Alex Lowes (Voltcom Crescent Suzuki) +0.355; 5. Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia) +0.936. 10. Eugene Laverty (Voltcom Crescent Suzuki) +3.060.

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