The EAB Ten Kate Junior Team rider started Sunday’s race from first place on the starting grid after securing his third pole position in a row. Van der Mark had a decent start but lost some places in the first tight section of the Portimao circuit. Fortunately the Dutchman recovered quickly and won the race, six seconds ahead of title rival Riccardo Russo (Yamaha) from Italy. With only one race to go, Van der Mark leads the championship by seven points over Russo. The final race is Saturday, October 6 at Magny-Cours in France.
Michael van der Mark (STK600 race – 1st + 5.992 seconds): “What a weekend. First the great news that I will ride for the Pata Honda World Supersport team next year and then this fantastic victory. My start wasn’t good at all but I could recover quickly. It will be very exciting at Magny-Cours in the last race. After this great win, my second in a row, I can’t wait to go the France!”
Because of heavy rainfall, the FIM Cup Superstock 1000 race was postponed to after the second World Superbike race. Luckily EAB Ten Kate Junior Team rider Fabio Massei remained calm and remained focused on the race where he started from fifth after two impressive qualifying sessions. Due to the rain, the grip level was completely different as in Saturday’s second qualification and unfortunately that gave Massei many problems. Nevertheless, Massei managed to finish seventh in tough conditions.
Fabio Massei (STK1000 race – 7th + 16.963 seconds): “Because of the heavy rain on Sunday morning the track was very slippery and completely different to Saturday. That gave me some problems but seventh position is better than nothing. I’m going to focus on Magny-Cours. My goal is to have a front row start in France to end the season positive!”
Bastien Chesaux had a difficult Superstock 600 European Championship weekend after a promising first free practice on Friday. Unfortunately he wasn’t able to hold his pace from the first session and couldn’t ride how he would like to. During the race, Chesaux had even more bad luck as he crashed out in the first lap.
Bastien Chesaux (STK600 race – DNF): “This is also racing… My start was good and I overtook four riders in the first two corners. Unfortunately someone highsided in front of me and I wasn’t able to avoid him. I even hit the rear wheel of the other rider with my helmet. I’m so disappointed as it is the third time I've crashed on the first lap without my fault. Hopefully we will have more luck at Magny-Cours!”