Lorenzo Baldassarri took to WorldSSP in stunning fashion with a win and a podium after two epic battles with reigning Champion Dominique Aegerter
The 2022 FIM Supersport World Championship kicked off in sensational fashion at MotorLand Aragon as reigning Champion Dominique Aegerter (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) battled hard with rookie Lorenzo Baldassarri (Evan Bros. WorldSSP Yamaha Team). Both races were decided on the last lap of the 15-lap battles with Aegerter and Baldassarri sharing one win apiece.
In Tissot Superpole, Baldassarri claimed a debut pole position by three tenths of a second ahead of Aegerter before the pair battled it out in Race 1 right until the final corner. In that battle, Baldassarri pulled off an incredible save at the final corner before going on to claim a maiden victory to become only the seventh rider to win on their WorldSSP debut.
Race 2 had a similar feel with the pair going head-to-head for victory and it was, once again, decided on the final lap on the long back straight. Italian rider Baldassarri had got ahead of Aegerter on the back straight but reigning Champion Aegerter was able to respond through the final left-handers of Turn 16 and 17 to claim his first win of the season and his first at MotorLand Aragon.
The results, with the duo sharing a first and second place finish over the weekend, leave them tied at the top of the Championship on 45 points although Aegerter is leading the Championship due to his win being more recent than Baldassarri’s. It sets up an incredible 2022 campaign while Can Oncu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) was also in the mix during various parts of the two races.
Looking back on the Race 2 action, Aegerter said: “I’m very happy to be back on the podium for my first victory this season. In Race 1, we were very lucky in the last corner. Today, I tried to push very hard from the beginning to make a small gap to the other riders. Balda was always behind me. I tried to focus and not make any mistakes. He overtook me one time so I checked where he was faster and where I could overtake him. He’s pace was not so good, so I overtook him back, tried to push very hard to make a small gap and he was overtaking me on the last lap on the straight. I said ‘no, not again the same thing’ so I tried to push very hard in the last corner. I was able to overtake him on the inside and 25 points, leading the Championship, it’s very nice.”
Baldassarri gave his side from Race 2 immediately after the race, saying: “Today was also a great battle with Domi. It started well. I saw that he was pushing hard and trying to escape. I followed him and I was feeling more comfortable than in Race 1. I’m feeling very good with the confidence when turning and also when I took risks, I could save like in Race 1. Today, I was beaten in the last corner. Domi did a good job to overtake me on the inside. On the exit, I tried to win but I put too much gas on and was sliding and this was the reason for the gap. This is a very good way to start the season.”
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