WSBK: Biaggi wraps up title at Imola
Max Biaggi (Aprilia) has won the 2010 World Superbike Championship with one round still remaining while Carlos Checa (Ducati) wins the Imola doubleheader.
The Italian was already on course to take the crown after Haslam (Suzuki), who had a spectacular engine failure and subsequently had to retire in the second race.
Biaggi took fifth after he chose to back off and revel in winning his first title in 17 years.
Significantly, Biaggi's win signals the first WSBK title triumph for an Italian rider, while the Italian team and Italian title sponsor makes the title win on home soil especially poignant.
Carlos Checa (Ducati), who just re-signed with Althea Ducati had a field day all thru the weekend dominating both events with relative ease.
Under some pressure after failing to finish inside the top ten for the first time this season during race one, Biaggi put himself in a much better position right at the start of the second race.
Pole sitter Tom Sykes (Kawasaki) was able to maintain his lead in both races but, in the end had to content with strong opposition and opponents with faster machines but still, the Kawasaki rider ended up respectively 6th and 4th at the finish line.
Lorenzo Lanzi (Ducati) was also impressive, the Italian rider’s best result this season coming to Imola was a mere eighth, having been among the leaders in both races finishing an incredible second in race No.1 and 7th in race No.2.
Haslam was soon shown with smoke billowing from his ailing GSX-R1000, the Briton pulling off the track in the knowledge that his title hopes were officially over. Frustratingly for Suzuki, it is their first mechanical fault of the season.
Meanwhile, Jonathan Rea's World Superbike season is all-but-over after a second accident during warm-up at Imola further aggravated his shoulder and wrist injuries.
Rea suffered a fracture in his collarbone and scaphoid in an accident during Superpole, but while the Northern Irishman made it out on track for morning warm-up, another fall has forced a decision to play it safe.
WSBK Imola Race No.1 – Results
Pos. Rider Team/Bike Gap
1. Carlos Checa Althea Ducati 1198
2. Lorenzo Lanzi DFX Ducati 1198 +1.171s
3. Noriyuki Haga Ducati Xerox 1198 +1.472s
4. Jakub Smrz PATA B&G Racing Aprilia RSV-4 +6.691s
5. Leon Haslam Alstare Suzuki GSX-R1000 +9.594s
6. Tom Sykes Kawasaki SRT ZX-10R +10.979s
7. Michel Fabrizio Ducati Xerox 1198 +15.023s
WSBK Imola Race No.2 – Results
Pos. Rider Team/Bike Gap
1. Carlos Checa Althea Ducati 1198 21 Laps
2. Noriyuki Haga Ducati Xerox 1198 +2.129s
3. Cal Crutchlow Yamaha Sterilgarda YZF R1 +3.926s
4. Tom Sykes Kawasaki SRT ZX-10R +5.762s
5. Max Biaggi Aprilia Alitalia Racing RSV-4 +7.025s
6. Shane Byrne Althea Ducati 1198 +12.147s
7. Lorenzo Lanzi DFX Ducati 1198 +14.212s