Three times in third overall and three times a WorldSSP runner-up: the elusive first WorldSSP title for Jules Cluzel could come his way in Qatar if the results fall the Frenchman’s way!
After the disappointment of Magny-Cours, Jules Cluzel (GMT94 YAMAHA) romped to a third victory of the 2019 World Supersport campaign, taking victory in San Juan, Argentina. The crucial win came when he took the lead on Lap 2 down the back straight before clearing off into the distance. Keeping his title hopes alive, Cluzel heads to Losail and the Qatari round of the Championship in contention to take an elusive first World Supersport Championship.
Getting a strong start and avoiding trouble, Cluzel slotted in behind his teammate, first-time pole-sitter Corentin Perolari. The French duo tussled for half a lap before Cluzel finally made his move stick on the approach to Turn 8, from which he was able to build an unassailable lead. Taking victory for a second time in San Juan, 2.6s was the gap ahead of Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) and Isaac Viñales (Kallio Racing).
Championship leader Randy Krummenacher (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team) was down in seventh place, whilst his teammate Federico Caricasulo was fifth. The poor performances for the top two in the title race combined with Cluzel’s win means that all three can take the title in Qatar.
Speaking after the race, Cluzel stated his elation of remaining in the title race: “I like this race track because I won twice in two races. To be honest, I think we have made a huge step on the bike, as it was amazing to ride this weekend. Even in the race, it was better than in the morning, so I enjoyed it so much. It was not easy though; yes, I was pushing in the beginning to just see what happened, but then I made a gap. It was difficult because I knew I could make a mistake and I didn’t want to do that!”
Cluzel has a 22-point deficit to Randy Krummenacher at the top of the standings, meaning that nothing less than a win will suffice for the Frenchman. Should he take victory, he will need to hope Krummenacher is lower than 13th and that Caricasulo is lower than fourth in order to take the crown. Such strange outcomes have happened before and with both BARDAHL Evan Bros. Yamahas off the podium in the last two rounds, could more drama await under the floodlights of Losail?
Remaining coy about his title hopes, Cluzel was solely positive about his feeling with the GMT94 YAMAHA team right now: “I am so happy, and it is amazing to enjoy this feeling with the bike; I am racing for these feelings. I have a big smile now! I am here to do the best I can and then we will see the result.”
Watch the three-way fight for the FIM Supersport World Championship supremacy in Qatar with the WorldSBK VideoPass, now at just 9.99€!