Round 13 Qatar

  • Gagne Equals Career Best Result with Ninth in Qatar

    A charging Jake Gagne claimed ninth place in the penultimate race of the 2018 WorldSBK season, earning a second row start for Race 2.


Race 1

Gagne Equals Career Best Result with Ninth in Qatar

Losail International Circuit, Qatar, October 26, 2018

A charging Jake Gagne claimed ninth place in the penultimate race of the 2018 WorldSBK season, earning a second row start for Race 2.

After a difficult opening day, the Red Bull Honda WorldSBK Team bounced back on Friday at the Losail International Circuit. Both Leon Camier and Jake Gagne started the day well in Free Practice 4 and were confident of challenging for the top two positions in Superpole 1. With a 1’57.555, over a second faster than he had been before SP1, Camier cruised through to Superpole 2 as the fastest rider. He would eventually earn tenth place on the grid, Gagne starting from 14th for the opening race.

The lights went out and Gagne immediately began to charge forward, making up two places on the opening lap. Gagne set a steady string of laps to break away from the chasing group, led by his team-mate Camier. His steady pace paid off towards the end of the race as Gagne picked off the likes of Savadori and Razgatlioglu for ninth place, missing out on eighth by a mere 0.061s as he and Chaz Davies dragged to the line. Gagne will now line up in sixth place on the second row for Race 2.

Having lost places at the start, Camier was eager to recover and chase down Gagne but got caught in traffic. While trying to regain positions the Brit unfortunately slid off at Turn 12, ending his race prematurely but escaping injury.

After taking ninth place in the opening race, Gagne increases his points haul to 64, just a point off 16th place in the championship. Camier continues to hold 12th overall.

The final race of 2018 will begin at 1900 local time (GMT +3) tomorrow, Camier and Gagne both looking to sign off the season in style.

 Jake Gagne

Comments

Jake Gagne (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team)

We had a good race. The first half was pretty lonely but it started to come together for me as the tire wear increased, I think we managed them a lot better than some of the guys around us. Qualifying wasn’t great, we had the speed to be up there but I made some mistakes and back there on row five makes for a rough start. I started flowing and being a little smoother and the Honda worked really well on the used tires to end ninth. We can make the bike a little bit better in Warm Up. Row two will make a big difference, we’ve been on row five at pretty much every race and it makes the start tough. If we can get away with the faster guys it will make it a lot easier.

Leon Camier (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team)

I’m alright after the crash. I went over a bump and the front just went. It was a really fast one but luckily I only slid. In Superpole we went something like 1.8 seconds faster on the race tire than we had been all weekend. We made a big step, it was only for one lap but we are gaining more. Then in the race we made a step with corner entry and everything is making more sense. We have 15 minutes tomorrow morning to keep improving the bike, so we need to sit down and have a think about what to do.

Kervin Bos - Team Manager

Really glad for Jake to confirm his speed in another race, his pace was really good. On the grid we told him ‘If you do your 58 lap times the race will come to you’. His ninth place matches his best from Laguna earlier this year so a big congratulations to him and importantly he starts on the second row tomorrow. He will be more than excited for the race tomorrow! Meanwhile, it was a tricky day for Leon. He got stuck in traffic and lost a lot of positions in the opening sector. From that point he tried to get feeling with the bike and push, but unfortunately lost the front in Turn 12 and ended his race. It’s not his weekend yet, but we rebuild and do it again tomorrow!


Race 2

2018 draws to an end for Red Bull Honda WorldSBK Team in Qatar

Losail International Circuit, Qatar, October 27, 2018

Adverse track conditions led to the cancellation of the final WorldSBK race of 2018, Camier and Gagne finishing the championship in 12th and 17th respectively.

The final day of the 2018 World Superbike season started in dramatic fashion as a huge sand and rain storm hit the Losail International Circuit, delaying track activity. Warm Up was used by riders to assess track conditions as the circuit continued to dry.

Unfortunately conditions did not improve significantly afterwards and it was decided Race 2 would be cancelled. Jake Gagne, set to start from a career best sixth, and Leon Camier were both disappointed at being unable to put on one last race but agreed with the decision.

Now the 2018 World Superbike season comes to a close. After 13 rounds Leon Camier finishes in 12th place with 108 points. Jake Gagne completes his rookie season in 17th thanks to his haul of 64 points and a strong end to the season.

Leon Camier, Jake Gagne

Comments

Leon Camier (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team)

A massive rain storm before we got going today. The organizers made the right decision to call off the race. As riders we all had our opinions heard. It was a shame to end the season like this, but safety always comes first. We had some ups at the start of the year but with a few injuries along the way it got tough. All in all, we understood a lot towards the end of the year and especially this weekend.

Jake Gagne (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team)

We got up this morning, we were at the pool at noon and by the time we got to the track it was some of the craziest wind, rain and sand I have ever seen. The track was mostly dry in Warm Up but there were still some wet spots so the race was called off. It’s not how we wanted to end the season, especially after yesterday and starting on the second row but that’s racing! I knew it would be a lot to learn coming in this year but I had such a great crew. I learned so much, I’ve had a fun year living the dream and racing in World Superbike.

Kervin Bos - Team Manager

A strange end to the season. The boys worked almost all night to give our best for Race 2 and it’s especially tough for Jake with his first second row start. Leon was also very eager to come back and end the season strong after yesterday’s disappointment. Of course it would have been great to race, but the weather was against us. Now we head back to Europe to look back at the season and see what the plan is.

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Results

World Superbike and World Supersport 2018

Round 13: Losail International Circuit, Qatar

Superbike Race 1

Rank Rider (Team)
1 Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK)
2 Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK)
3 Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team)
4 LavertyEugene (Milwaukee Aprilia)
5 Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati)
6 Loris Baz (GULF ALTHEA BMW Racing Team)
9 Jake Gagne (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team)
RT Leon Camier (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team)

Supersport

Rank Rider (Team)
1 Lucas MAHIAS (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team)
2 Sandro CORTESE (Kallio Racing)
3 Federico CARICASULO (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team)
4 Thomas GRADINGER (NRT)
5 Randy KRUMMENACHER (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team)
6 C. PEROLARI (GMT94 Yamaha)
9 Hannes SOOMER (Racedays)
10 Peter SEBESTYEN (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda)
13 Jaimie VAN SIKKELERUS (GEMAR Team Lorini)
16 Alex MURLEY (GEMAR Team Lorini)
RT Kyle SMITH (GEMAR Team Lorini)

Photos