Conditions could not have been more different at the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours this afternoon as Sylvain Guintoli finished his second race of the Fassi French Round in brilliant sunshine and eighth place aboard his Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK YZF-R1. Alex Lowes concluded a difficult weekend in 19th after a fall at turn 13 on lap 12.
Running a solid race, Guintoli set consistent pace as he circulated in seventh place for the 21-lap distance. Battling hard with Torres and Hayden in the final stages, the Frenchman was caught on the last lap by his Spanish challenger but held fast against the American as he crossed the line to collect eight points boosting his championship position to 12th.
Suffering a bad start, Lowes gave himself work to do from 14th as race two began but had quickly made up time and two places by the end of the opening lap. Running in the high 1'38's, the British rider was sitting in 11th from his second revolution, maintaining his position until a fall on lap 12 put paid to his efforts. Re-joining the race in 20th he again attempted to move forward, but with the gap too large to bridge, he collected a frustrating 19th place finish at the flag.
Finnish rider Niki Tuuli continued to shine in the FIM Supersport World Championship as he consolidated his debut podium from the Lausitzring with a second place at Magny-Cours. The young rookie impressed on his YZF-R6 as he stormed his way through the pack from his seventh place start. Taking the lead, from third position, on the 12th revolution, he fought hard to maintain the advantage until the final lap, losing out to the eventual winner, and local talent, Jules Cluzel.
The Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team now heads to southern Spain for the championship's final European races at the Circuito de Jerez, in a fortnight's time.
Race: 8th / +18.951 / 21 laps. Championship: 12th / 91 points
"Today was okay actually, I felt that I got the best from the YZF-R1, rode well and with a good rhythm. We knew from the practice that we were lacking outright pace and that was proved in the race. Obviously I'm not happy with the position but as far as riding the bike, I feel that I raced well and I'm looking forward to Jerez."
Race: 19th / +1.27.462 / 21 laps. Championship: 11th / 107 points
"A disappointing day again with a poor start which didn't help but I started picking a few people off and got into a rhythm, creeping up on the top ten and then had the crash. It was another one in which I'm not really sure why it happened to be honest, which is frustrating because I didn't feel like I had done anything wrong. In the end, it was a mistake, a crash and then the race is finished so I'm really, really disappointed. We need to turn this around because the whole year in general has been filled with lots of injury and disappointments, so together we need to somehow turn it around for the end of the year."
Paul Denning Paul Denning Team Principal
"For various reasons it's been another challenging race weekend for the whole team here in Magny-Cours and we are not able to use the full potential of the YZF-R1 compared to the speed we were able to show on Friday. A positive point today was that in only his second event back from injury Sylvain rode a very solid, consistent race and was able to enjoy a good fight with strong competitors, and to feel that both he and the R1 had made progress.
"For Alex clearly today was a disappointment and it's also clear that we need to find a way to achieve the performance we need from the bike but also to give Alex more understanding and more margin at the limit and to do a better job as a team.
"The whole team's congratulations go to Lucas Mahias and the Pata Yamaha Official STK1000 Team for a dominant victory in the Superstock race, demonstrating again that the base of the YZF-R1 is so strong, and also to Niki Tuuli for an exciting second place, backing up his Lausitzring World Supersport result, on the R6."