Milwaukee Aprilia’s Eugene Laverty and Lorenzo Savadori posted their best results of the WorldSBK season so far, taking fourth and fifth respectively under the floodlights of Qatar.
The pair took advantage of a clearly struggling Tom Sykes, mugging him at the same corner with a handful of laps to run, and were in a battle of their own which Laverty managed to win by two-tenths as they finished just 1.8s off the podium.
“That was a proper race. That was something we’ve needed for a while, we were going forward even at the end which was such a great feeling and I equalled my best result of P4 at Portimao with an even stronger race,” said Laverty.
“The weekend started pretty rough, the bike didn’t feel good in Free Practice and I wasn’t happy with the feeling. The guys worked really hard though and I’m happy with the changes they made. Every weekend should be like this and the progress is made in the garage, so it’s been a very positive step for us and we’ve seen the results of that.
“The main changes we made were to the rear of the bike, trying to get it to dig in on the really smooth surface here. The rear was fading a little at the end but for sure there is more improvement to find there.
“Lorenzo was riding really strong and we were matched throughout the race. When I came up on Sykes I could see his rear was going off so I made a strong move which stuck. Lorenzo was fast too but I was able to come out on top and I’m happy to start from pole in race two where I think we can have another strong result.”
Savadori added: “The race was my equal best result of the year after P5 at Assen, and it was a good fight with Eugene and Tom Sykes for P4. Sykes had some problem with the rear so I could close quite fast, and then I was trying to pass Eugene for P4. We had a good battle but he passed me again on the straight and I had to finish P5. It was a good result and I’m happy with more points for the team.”