WorldSBK Argentina: Supersport double win for Aegerter| WorldSBK staff | WorldSBK
Dominique Aegerter took another step closer to his second World Supersport title at San Juan, adding the race-two victory to yesterday’s win.
The reigning champion extended his lead to 72 points over Lorenzo Baldassarri (Evan Bros. WorldSSP Yamaha Team) following the Turn 15 overtake on the final lap during a dramatic Motul Argentinean Round as race leaders crashed out and there were final lap battles to decide the podium places.
Raffaele De Rosa (Orelac Racing VerdNatura WorldSSP) was controlling the race from first position but his race came to an end on Lap 11 after the Italian crashed at Turn 9 from the lead of the race.
Although able to re-join the race, he brought his machine into the pits and retired from the race. This allowed Lorenzo Baldassarri (Evan Bros. WorldSSP Yamaha Team), Dominique Aegerter (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) and Federico Caricasulo (Althea Racing) to fight at the front of the field for victory.
With Baldassarri out in front, Aegerter and Caricasulo were battling with each other which allowed the Italian rookie to extend his gap at the front of the field; Caricasulo dropped behind Aegerter initially after an error on Lap 14 in the first sector, with Aegerter taking advantage.
Once Aegerter got ahead of Caricasulo, he closed in on Baldassarri over the final few laps and he did so, passing Baldassarri into Turn 10 on Lap 17. Baldassarri resisted Aegerter until the final lap before Aegerter made a move on the Italian at Turn 15 on the final lap to take his 15th win of the 2022 season.
Baldassarri ran wide following the move from Aegerter which allowed Caricasulo to take advantage and move into second place, with Caricasulo taking his third podium of the season and his best result of 2022 as he put himself on 25 podiums in WorldSSP. Baldassarri’s third place means he now has 15 WorldSSP podiums but the nine-point swing between Aegerter and Baldassarri in Race 2 means Aegerter can win the title in the next race, when WorldSSP visits Indonesia.
Finnish rider Niki Tuuli (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) had been fighting for the podium places but he ran wide on Lap 7 at Turn 1 which dropped him down the order. Despite closing the gap as the riders ahead of him battled, he was only able to take fourth place and finishing just over two seconds behind Aegerter; fourth is Tuuli’s best result of the season. Stefano Manzo (Dynavolt Triumph) took fifth place, with three ‘next generation’ machines inside the top five, while Jules Cluzel (GMT94 Yamaha) took sixth place on his final race in Argentina.
Turkish rider Can Oncu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) took seventh spot as he fought up the field following a difficult Tissot Superpole session, in what turned out to be a bit of a lonely race for Oncu. He was four seconds behind Cluzel but almost six seconds ahead of Nicolo Bulega (Ariuba.it Racing WorldSSP Team) in eighth.
Andy Verdoia (GMT94 Yamaha) was ninth as he fought with Bulega in the latter stages of the race, finishing just 0.680s behind the Italian, while Adrian Huertas (MTM Kawasaki) rounded out the top ten. Huertas had to serve a Long Lap Penalty for irresponsible riding in Race 1.
It was a dramatic start to the race with a crash between Oli Bayliss (BARNI Spark Racing Team) and Hannes Soomer (Dynavolt Triumph) putting Soomer out of the race on the spot, while Bayliss was able to continue although the Australian brought his bike into the pits in the opening stages of the race. Bayliss was taken to the medical centre for a check-up following the crash.
At the start of Lap 2, at Turn 1, Luca Bernardi (CM Racing) and Bradley Smith (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) came together, with Smith out of the race and Bernardi briefly continuing before retiring from the race. Both incidents were placed under investigation by the FIM WorldSBK Stewards, to be investigated after the race. It was an eventful race for rookie Yari Montella (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) after he crashed at Turn 13 on Lap 3, before being given a double Long Lap Penalty for a jump start; the Italian rider retired from the race.