The Italian claimed his best result in WorldSBK with second place in Race 2 at the TT Circuit Assen
Race 2 for the Motul Dutch Round provided highlights for riders up and down the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship grid with Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) one of these, and he took his best WorldSBK result to date in Race 2 at the TT Circuit Assen. Locatelli finished second in the final race of the weekend as he hunted down and passed Spanish rookie Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) in the closing stages of Race 2.
Locatelli lined up fourth on the Race 2 grid and made a stunning start to move into second place, swooping around the outside of Turn 1 to sit behind teammate Toprak Razgatlioglu before falling behind Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) and Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK). On Lap 6, when teammate Razgatlioglu and Rea crashed out of the race, Locatelli found himself behind Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) and Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing).
As the race progressed, Locatelli was able to overtake compatriot Bassani to move into third place and set his sights on Lecuona out in front. He closed the gap between the pair gradually before making his move on Lap 18 of 21 to move into second place. After recording four third-place finishes in his rookie season last year, Locatelli’s first podium of 2022 was his best result of his career. It also came at the same venue he secured his first WorldSBK rostrum visit at in 2021, when he finished third in Race 2.
Reacting to his career-best result to date, Locatelli said: “It was amazing to conclude with a podium; since Friday, it has been my objective to get a podium and, in the end, we’re a bit lucky but we take a podium. I’m a bit sorry for Toprak and Jonny, as the guys were really fast and they want to fight every race, but this is racing. When I see the opportunity for a podium, I want to try and push. I lost a bit of time and had a gap with Iker, so I tried to push, to close the gap and catch him and I finished in front of him, so I’m really happy. I want to try to follow Alvaro but for now, it’s so difficult. He goes so fast! We need to improve a little bit but for now, it’s important points and results, so we need to continue this work and prepare for the weekend as good as possible on Friday and get a podium at the next race.”
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