Cortese clinches third Superpole of 2018

Saturday, 9 June 2018 13:37 GMT

Yamaha lock out the front row as WorldSSP tackle hot conditions

Sandro Cortese (Kallio Racing) took his third Tissot Superpole of the season with a stunning final lap, running six tenths of a second faster than the riders preceding him and putting him in a perfect position to extend his championship lead.

In a season marked by the tiny margins separating all the top riders, Cortese was overcome early on by Randy Krummenacher (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team), with the Swiss rider taking the lead in his first lap and keeping it until Cortese’s amazing run, with 50 seconds to go before the checkered flag. The Swiss rider couldn’t improve his lap time at the end, however he returns to the front row ins second, and could put up a thrilling battle tomorrow.

The front row will be completed by Jules Cluzel (NRT), second in the standings, setting up the top-end fight for tomorrow. They will come under intense pressure from Raffaele De Rosa (MV Agusta Reparto Corse by Vamag) however, with the Italian adamant to claim a fourth successive podium. He will start in fourth despite a late crash, leading row two ahead of the two GRT riders. Lucas Mahias (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team) had the better of his teammate Federico Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team) this time, taking fifth on the grid, with the Italian in sixth.

Row three will see Ayrton Badovini (MV Agusta Reparto Corse by Vamag) putting his F3 675 on the grid in seventh, in front of Anthony West (EAB antwest Racing) in eighth, and Sheridan Morais (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) in ninth. The top ten on Saturday was completed by Thomas Gradinger (NRT) in tenth place, with Kyle Smith (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda) and Hikari Okubo (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), through from the Superpole 2, in eleventh and twelfth respectively.

Can Cluzel or Cortese snatch their third win of the season? Or will a third rider overcome their dominance? It’s lights out at 11:30 local time (09:30 GMT) tomorrow, with all the best action available thanks to the WorldSBK VideoPass.