Diaz withstands WorldSSP300 challenge to claim Misano Race 2 victory

Sunday, 12 June 2022 12:55 GMT

After missing out in Race 1 in one of the smallest margins in WorldSSP300, the Spanish rider reclaimed the Championship lead with a stunning Race 2

It was another thrilling battle in the FIM Supersport 300 World Championship at the Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli” as Alvaro Diaz (Arco Motor University Team) claimed his second win of the 2022 season in Race 2 for the Pirelli Emilia-Romagna Round. With victory, only the second rider to win more than one race this season so far, Diaz reclaimed the Championship lead.

BREAKING AWAY: Diaz stuns for race victory

In a typically frenetic WorldSSP300 race, Diaz moved into the lead of the race with two laps to go and, despite late pressure from his rivals, was able to hold on to race victory; the second of his career. It means he now has a 20-point lead in the Championship as he moves back into top spot after his title rivals faltered during the race. Diaz’s margin of victory was 0.408s at the end of the race, as he responded to Race 1 where he missed out by just 0.020s. Japanese rider Yuta Okaya (MTM Kawasaki) made a late move into second place to take his eighth podium in WorldSSP300, putting him level with Bahattin Sofuoglu and Adrian Huertas, while Victor Steeman (MTM Kawasaki) claiming third place after a dramatic race.

DRAMA THROUGHOUT: completing the top six

Hugo De Cancellis (Leader Team Flembbo) claimed fourth spot after battling with Steeman for the podium, with the pair separated by just 0.003s at the line. German rider Dirk Geiger (Fusport-RT Motorsports by SKM-Kawasaki) equalled the best result of his WorldSSP300 career as he took fifth place, ahead of compatriot Lennox Lehmann (Freudenberg KTM – Paligo Racing); Lehmann had crossed the line in fifth but was demoted one place for exceeding track limits on the last lap. Lehmann completed yet another comeback after battling his way from the middle of the pack.

TAKING HOME POINTS: completing the top 15

Italian rider Mirko Gennai (Team BrCorse) had been in the leading in the group during the race but found himself down in seventh place ahead of fellow Italian rider Kevin Sabatucci (Kawasaki GP Project) with less than a tenth separating the pair. Sabatucci had a two-tenths margin of Ruben Bijman (MTM Kawasaki) in ninth and wildcard Alfonso Coppola (VM Racing Team) in tenth. Coppola started from the back of the grid, 31st place, after a tyre pressure infringement on the grid but battled his way up to the lead group as he looked to replicate Samuel Di Sora (Leader Team Flembbo) at Estoril. He also was forced to drop one position during the race for overtaking under yellow flags during the race, with the wildcard eventually finishing in tenth.

Gabriele Mastroluca (ProGP Racing) was half-a-second down on Coppola in 11th place with Inigo Iglesias (SMW Racing) 12th. Iglesias had been in the lead group but dropped down the order and finished just 0.049s ahead of 2017 Champion Marc Garcia (Yamaha MS Racing) in 13th place. Bruno Ieraci (Prodina Racing WorldSSP300) was 14th ahead of Filipino rider Troy Alberto (Fusport-RT Motorsports by SKM-Kawasaki) who claimed his first points of his rookie campaign.

HOUSEKEEPING: to note from Race 2

On Lap 1, Petr Svoboda (Accolade Smrz Racing), Ton Kawakami (AD78 Team Brasil by MS Racing) and wildcard Mattia Martella (Prodina Racing WorldSSP300) had a crash at Turn 4, with Kawakami and Martella retiring from the race. Svoboda went back to the pits and returned to the race before a crash at Turn 8 on Lap 7. On Lap 2 at Turn 3, Alessandro Zanca (Kawasaki GP Project) crashed out on his own at Turn 3. Iker Garcia Abella (Yamaha MS Racing), Harry Khouri (Fusport-RT Motorsports by SKM-Kawasaki) and Marco Gaggi (Vinales Racing Team). Sylvain Markarian (Leader Team Flembbo) was a late retirement after a crash with Yeray Saiz Marquez (Accolade Smrz Racing) on Lap 14 at Turn 3, with Saiz Marquez able to re-join the race while Markarian retired; the Frenchman was taken to the medical centre for a check-up following the crash.

Race 1 winner Matteo Vannucci (AG Motorsport Italia Yamaha) did not take part in Race 2 after he was declared unfit with a thoracic trauma and was transported to hospital by helicopter for medical assessments. As he was due to start from pole position, every rider on the grid moved up one position, meaning Steeman started from pole position.

The top six following WorldSSP300 Race 2, full results here:

1. Alvaro Diaz (Arco Motor University Team) 

2. Yuta Okaya (MTM Kawasaki) +0.408s

3. Victor Steeman (MTM Kawasaki) +0.930s

4. Hugo De Cancellis (Prodina Racing WorldSSP300) +0.933

5. Dirk Geiger (Fusport-RT Motorsports by SKM-Kawasaki) 1.067s

6. Lennox Lehmann (Freudenberg KTM – Paligo Racing) +1.100

Fastest Lap: Lennox Lehmann, KTM – 1’49.679s

1. Alvaro Diaz (Arco Motor University Team) 125 points

2. Marc Garcia (Yamaha MS Racing) 105

3. Samuel Di Sora (Leader Team Flembbo) 101

4. Victor Steeman (MTM Kawasaki) 96

5. Yuta Okaya (MTM Kawasaki) 92

6. Hugo De Cancellis (MTM Kawasaki) 73

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