Michael van der Mark had to produce a solid lap in the dying moments of final qualifying at Istanbul Park today to secure a place on the third row of the grid for tomorrow’s 11th-round World Supersport championship race.
The 20-year-old Dutch Pata Honda rider had been sitting in a long way back when a red flag came out with three minutes of the qualifying session remaining. When the World Supersport riders went back out, van der Mark delayed his return to get a clear run.
While local rider Kenan Sofuoglu cemented pole position, van der Mark put in his best lap of the weekend to climb spectacularly back up the timing sheets. His time put him just ahead of Pata Honda team-mate Lorenzo Zanetti, who was eighth-fastest today.
The 26-year-old Italian had put in a new rear tyre just before the red flags came out at the end of the session and he was unable to improve his earlier time of 1m59.826s
Michael van der Mark – P7, 1m59.785s
We tried some set-up changes today, which worked OK, but the biggest change today was a change in my riding style. I left it until quite late to try, but it worked really well! It’s much easier to rider the bike and, although I wasn’t really happy with that last lap, sometimes you need to go a little bit more slowly to go faster. I was quite happy when I crossed the line and saw a 59s on the screen. We waited to find some room on the track and P7 is OK to have a go tomorrow. I think I can go faster in the race with this new style, so I am really looking forward to tomorrow.
Lorenzo Zanetti – P8, 1m59.826s
I was a bit frustrated because I put in a new tyre and got one lap before the red flag. I had improved my time and was in fifth place, and on the lap that the flags came out the first two sectors were better too. The new tyre was almost finished when I went out and I still made the same lap time but there were a lot of riders together so I couldn’t go faster. I think our potential was the front row but we must still choose which tyre to use in the race. If we make the right choice, my rhythm is OK and I think we can fight for the podium.
Pieter Breddels – technical co-ordinator
We lost track time because of the weather earlier and the red flags didn’t help. Lorenzo has been strong all weekend and he can fight for a good result tomorrow. We struggled to get Michael faster, and he was struggling too, but in the end he qualified just in front of his team-mate. Both guys are in the mix again and it should be an interesting race.
2013 World Supersport championship, round 11 – Istanbul Park, Turkey
Final qualifying results:
1 Kenan Sofuoglu (TUR) Kawasaki 1m58.380s
2 Sam Lowes (GBR) Yamaha 1m58.762s
3 Christian Iddon (GBR) MV Agusta 1m59.438s
4 Florian Marino (FRA) Kawasaki 1m59.595s
5 Kevin Coghlan (GBR) Kawasaki 1m59.655s
6 David Salom (ESP) Kawasaki 1m59.672
7 Michael van der Mark (NED) Pata Honda 1m59.785s
8 Lorenzo Zanetti (ITA) Pata Honda 1m59.826s