The official race report service of Kawasaki Racing Team.

11 May 2019

Okubo Fifth In Imola Superpole

Kawasaki Puccetti Racing WorldSSP rider Hikari Okubo was fifth and his team-mate Lucas Mahias seventh in a delayed Superpole qualifying session at Imola, which was held in dry and mild weather conditions.

Okubo, who was ninth after two free practice sessions on Friday, moved up to fifth by setting his fastest Superpole time in the middle of the 25-minute long session. He now starts from the second row of the grid in Sunday’s 17-lap race.
Both Lucas and Hikari set 11 Superpole laps in all, with Mahias leaving his best push until last, and finishing up in seventh place. He now leads the third row of the grid.
After morning warm-up the fifth race of the 2019 season will take place at Sunday the 12th of May, with both riders looking to score their first podiums of the year.
Hikari Okubo, stated: “I tried to push hard today and I got my best lap at this track with a 1’51.3. That was not such a bad lap as my best one until today about a second slower. My target was to be on the front row but a top five is not so bad. From the second row maybe I can do a good race with the top group. My consistency of lap time is not so bad either. The top two riders are very fast but from the top three to the top seven or eight is a similar lap time, so it is important to keep a constant lap time in the race. I hope tomorrow to make a good race. There is a 50% chance of rain but no problem for me, wet or dry.”
Lucas Mahias stated: “I start from seventh place tomorrow and it was not the best qualifying session. I continue working hard to improve my feeling on the bike. I will aim for the podium and the best race result of the year. If it rains maybe it will be better but in the rain it is a game – maybe you win maybe you lose – and the limit is very close.”
Ayrton Badovini (Team Pedercini Racing Kawasaki) placed eighth on the grid at his home round in Italy, while his team-mate Kyle Smith (Team Pedercini Racing Kawasaki) was 18th after a difficult first day on Friday.
Glenn van Straalen (EAB Racing Team Kawasaki) rode with determination to finish 14th in the Superpole ranking. Rob Hartog (Team Hartog – Against Cancer Kawasaki) was 22nd today and Nacho Calero (Orelac Racing VerdNatura Kawasaki) 23rd fastest.