BAYLISS BACK WITH A VENGEANCE TO TAKE BRILLIANT RACE 2 WIN AT ASSEN
Assen (Netherlands), Sunday 29 April: Troy Bayliss (Ducati Xerox) came back with a vengeance to take a brilliant race 2 win in glorious weather conditions at Assen. The 70,000 strong crowd were treated to some fantastic racing on the day and Troy bounced back from a disappointing result in the first race, when his front tyre went off with six laps remaining, to take his second win of the year from James Toseland.
The margin of Troy's victory, his first since Phillip Island in March, was just 0.009 seconds and it was earned with an incredible dive inside his Honda rival at the final chicane just metres from the line.
"It was an incredible race and there was lots of action. I take my hat off to James, he's riding stronger and is getting more and more confident all the time" declared Troy. "I'm happy to take a win but I'm also very frustrated because in the first race I thought I could possibly have taken a win and we really struggled in the last six laps with the front tyre. We just made a mistake and didn't use the hard tyre but then we did use the hard tyre in the second race and the last three laps I was really struggling again so we have to put our heads together and work a bit on the setting because you just can't ride like that all the time. We were both over the limit in those last few laps, I was trying to cover my lines, slowing down in some corners and speeding up, and James was doing the same. At the last chicane the win could have been anybody's!"
Lorenzo Lanzi ran well with the leaders in both races but suffered similar problems to his team-mate in the first encounter, in which he finished fifth and then crashed out of fourth place four laps before the chequered flag.
"The crash in race 2 was my fault because I made a mistake while I was pushing really hard to try and catch Max" declared Lorenzo. "I didn't want to miss out on the podium because I had an excellent feeling with the bike and was going well. Then I had a slight problem with the rear tyre, I was losing in the first sector and then gaining on Max in the second and third split, there were just four laps to go and I just tried to catch him. Pity, but the important thing is I wasn't hurt. In race 2 I used the same tyre as Troy and I was going much better than in the first race. Pity because I was running at a good pace and could have scored a good result. I didn't realise that Ruben had crashed alongside me, I just heard the noise when he tried to pass me on the inside. However I'm pleased because I found a good feeling with the 999 once again and I'm looking forward to the next round at Monza."
Race 1: 1. Toseland (Honda); 2. Haga (Yamaha); 3. Xaus (Ducati); 4. Bayliss (Ducati Xerox); 5. Lanzi (Ducati Xerox); 6. Biaggi (Suzuki); 7. Kagayama (Suzuki); 8. Nieto (Kawasaki); 9. Rolfo (Honda); 10. Neukirchner (Suzuki). Race 2: 1. Bayliss; 2. Toseland; 3. Biaggi; 4. Corser (Yamaha); 5. Rolfo; 6. Fabrizio (Honda); 7. Neukirchner; 8. Nieto; 9. Smrz (Ducati); 10. Laconi (Kawasaki).
Points (after 5 of 13 rounds): Riders - 1. Toseland 196; 2. Biaggi 164; 3. Haga 144; 4. Bayliss 128; 5. Corser 114; 6. Xaus 99; 7. Lanzi 98; 8. Neukirchner 71. Manufacturers - 1. Honda 185; 2. Yamaha 154; 3. Ducati 148; 4. Suzuki 148; 5. Kawasaki 61.