Spanish rider Joan Lascorz put in two solid points scoring performances at Round 12 of the World Superbike Championship at Magny-Cours to continue the fine end of season form for the Penrith-based Paul Bird Motorsport Team.
Aboard the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R, Lascorz moved up the overall rankings while Yorkshireman Tom Sykes endured problems in race one and crashed out in the second 23-lap race.
Lascorz was much improved in qualifying this weekend and started each race from tenth on the grid, riding well to post eighth in race one and then a battling seventh in the second race. Joan is now 11th in the championship with one round to go in Portimao in two weeks time.
After some great rides in both qualifying and races recently, Sykes had high hopes for his Magny-Cours race day. He had been sixth in qualifying but dropped from a top four position in the early laps to tenth as Tom did not have the available traction to fight back. To compound his misery, in race two Sykes fell under braking on the opening lap when trying to avoid another rider meaning he's now in 13th in the rankings.
Joan Lascorz: "I used the same type of tyre in both races but the tyre was used up more in race two. I moved up a bit in the championship and that was good. Overall this weekend had been less difficult than at some other circuits but the second race was definitely more difficult for me."
Tom Sykes: "I suffered with grip and I was surprised that the lap time was over half a second slower than we had been doing on the same tyre all weekend. I cannot get downbeat about it and I felt I could have held my own within the top four. For half a lap in the second race the grip was fantastic but when I followed Checa into turn 14, I fell without any warning. Magny-Cours is probably my worst circuit on the calendar but we were right in there in almost all the sessions so that is a positive thing to take away."
Paul Bird, Team Owner: "After two good rounds, it was back to earth with a bump this weekend but sometimes things just don't go your way. A couple of top ten placings is what we have come to expect from Joan when its hot and Tom had a couple of races he'll want to forget as quickly as possible. We'll see what Portimao brings and hope we can end our time in World Superbikes with a fitting performance."
Results - Race One1, C Checa (Althea Racing)2, M Melandri (Yamaha World Superbike Team)3, L Haslam (BMW Motorrad Motorsport)4, L Camier (Aprilia Alitalia Racing Team)5, E Laverty (Yamaha World Superbike Team)6, S Guintoli (Team Effenbert-Liberty Racing)7, N Haga (PATA Racing Team Aprilia)8, J Lascorz (Kawasaki Racing Team)9, T Corser (BMW Motorrad Motorsport)10, T Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team)
Results - Race Two1, C Checa (Althea Racing2, M Melandri (Yamaha World Superbike Team)3, E Laverty (Yamaha World Superbike Team)4, L Haslam (BMW Motorrad Motorsport)5, S Guintoli (Team Effenbert-Liberty Racing)6, L Camier (Aprilia Alitalia Racing Team)7, J Lascorz (Kawasaki Racing Team)8, A Badovini (BMW Motorrad Italia SBK Team)9, T Corser (BMW Motorrad Motorsport)10, N Haga (PATA Racing Team Aprilia)DNF T Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team)
Championship Standings (after round 12)1, C Checa 467pts2, M Melandri 3603, E Laverty 2834, M Biaggi 2815, L Haslam 2166, L Camier 1947, Guintoli 1798, N Haga 1709, A Badovini 15510, M Fabrizio 14511, J Lascorz 14213, T Sykes 133