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WSSSan MarinoApril 18, 2004
World Supersport Championship 2004 - Round 3
Misano Adriatico

Muggeridge and Honda Win in Misano Rains

In a dramatic and often costly World Supersport race at Misano, Karl Muggeridge (Ten Kate Honda) secured the race win, the first for him and his team in the 2004 season.

Chasing his team-mate Broc Parkes (Ten Kate HondaCBR600RR) for most of the race, Muggeridge was propelled into the lead when, shortly after setting the fastest lap, Parkes fell from his machine with eight laps to go. This left Muggeridge a free track but lots of work still to do, especially with rain-master Kevin Curtain (Yamaha) on his tail. Curtain was to finish second, with Championship leader Jurgen van den Goorbergh (Yamaha) third.

Torrential rain at the end of the previous World Superbike race delayed the start of the Supersport race by a significant 40 minutes, as areas of the track were cleaned and allowed to dry out somewhat. The race was nonetheless declared wet, and most riders opted for soft compound wet tyres.

The Honda Italia Megabike duo, Alessio Corradi and Denis Sacchetti, both finished, Corradi strongly in fifth place after a terrible start, and Sacchetti in 14th place.

For the Klaffi Honda team, each of their two riders was a faller in a race that had only 16 finishers. Sebastien Charpentier crashed exiting the last chicane on lap nine, experiencing a high side fall on what was a slippery and unpredictable section of the track.

Max Neukirchner (Klaffi Honda CBR600RR) only managed a few hundred meters of the Misano circuit in race conditions, being taken out by a falling competitor during a three rider crash at the first corner, walking away uninjured by understandably disappointed.

Muggeridge said from the podium, “I’m delighted to win in such horrendous conditions. I was nearly out of the race a couple of times early on so I’m pleased to be here. I don’t know if I could have caught Broc. I’d close onhim and he would respond so it was static. I had a few slides and would have settled for second, but I’m happy to win.”

Parkes, a previous podium finisher at Misano, was philosophical. “I lost the front on the second last left,” he affirmed. “I sort of just touched the brake going in and it tucked under, but so fast. I never had any moments in the race before that and I felt really good. I saw that Karl was catching slowly so I was dawdling a bit and needed to go a little faster.”

Charpentier stated, through his disappointment: “On the exit of the last corner the rear went immediately away. Suddenly no grip in the rear and it was the same in practice. This is a very difficult day for me because I have no more points in the championship, and that is bad for the whole season.”

Neukirchner, after another assured qualifying, said of his fall, “There was nothing I could do. In the very first corner a rider came from behind and the side and took me out. It was a very short race and an unhappy one.”

Corradi, notable by his race progress, was dismayed at his start but felt satisfied in other ways. “I changed from first to second gear off the start but the bike stayed in first so I lost a lot of time when it spun up. It’s disappointing at home but I made some good points. I have never had a good result in the rain and this is the first race in which I have a real feel for my Honda - so I am happy for two reasons.”

Sacchetti, who scored his first points in World Supersport, said "I was lucky at the beginning because a lot of riders fell in front of me and I just missed the fall, so I rode to make sure I finished in the points. I’m pleased to have done this as these two points are my first in World Supersport.”

In the Championship itself, van den Goorbergh leads on 57 points, with Curtain on 47 and Muggeridge an upwardly mobile 37. Corradi propelled himself to the 20 point mark and ninth in classification, with Parkes 11th, on 13 points.

World Superbike Races Regis Laconi (Ducati) had to give best to wet Superpole winner Steve Martin (Ducati) on Saturday but despite having to fight through from a bad start the Frenchman took his second win of the 2004 season. The largely dry start of the race was delayed, due to problems with one of the machines on the grid, but it was stopped before the scheduled 24-lap finish, due to the return of the rains that plagued qualifying.

Second place was taken by long time leader Tory Corser (Petronas) with Pierfrancesco Chili (Ducati) third, when Kawasaki rider Mauro Sanchini crashed out. Nori Yukihada (Ducati) finisched fourth and  Cris Vermeulen fifth on his privately entered Ten Kate Honda.

A quite spectacular chase through almost the entire field, from 15th on lap one, delivered the first race win of the 2004 season to Pierfrancesco Chili (Ducati). He hunted down the long time leader Laconi, as the Frenchman’styres went off faster than his on a drying track. In third, Steve Martin (Ducati) was fully 32 seconds adrift of the front running fight.

In the World Championship itself, Chili now leads by a convincing 20 points, 97 to James Toseland (Ducati) and his 77. In third, Laconi leads Chris Vermeulen, also on 70 points, by dint of having won two races.

Round four of the championship continues in Italy, at the classic and impressively fast Monza circuit on May 14 -16.

Supersport Championship 2004, Round 3
Misano Adriatico

1 K. MUGGERIDGE (Ten Kate Honda)
2 K. CURTAIN (Yamaha Motor Deutschland)
3 J. VD GOORBERGH (Yamaha Italia)
4 K. FUJIWARA (Suzuki Alstare Corona Extra)
5 A. CORRADI (Italia Megabike)
6 L. LANZI (Ducati Breil)
14 D. SACCHETTI (Italia Megabike)
15 E. CHEN (IRT Honda Israel)


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