Van der Mark: "We didn’t expect to struggle so early on"

Saturday, 9 June 2018 15:46 GMT

Dutchman is hopeful of a podium battle on Sunday

Coming out on top of a solid team-mate battle around the Automotodrom Brno, Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) hopes to take it one step further in race two, as he looks at fixing the front end issues encountered with the YZF-R1.

Qualifying in sixth position and securing a good race pace, the Donington double winner got a good start in the second race start but he soon encountered some issues with the front end that hindered his performance in the opening laps. With his team-mate Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) in sight, the 25 year olds pace picked up towards the end of the race and he began a strong battle with the Brit.

Despite his final resurge of pace, van der Mark was still unhappy with his distance from the leader – crossing the line 11 seconds back from Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK).

“I was happy with Superpole,” begins van der Mark. “As sixth is a good position. In the first few laps I struggled with the rear grip but then we had the re-start. We got a good start and I felt good, making my way forward but after five or six laps I was starting to struggle with the front, which made it difficult to finish the race. I was really happy to finish in fourth and I’m not happy with how we finished. We’re way too far off the win, and we struggled early in the race which was not expected, so we have to analyse really well and see what we can change tomorrow.”

Hopeful of a stronger pace in race two, he will start from pole position with his Yamaha: “Tomorrow, if we can make some changes and feel better with the front we can fight for a podium that’s for sure.”

Keep up with van der Mark’s pace throughout the final day at the Acerbis Czech Round, all with the WorldSBK VideoPass.