The UK Round of the 2017 FIM Superbike World Championship has come to a close with the second WorldSBK race of the weekend, which took place today under sunny skies at Donington Park. Stefan Bradl was eleventh at the chequered flag on board his Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2 machine.
The outcome of the race for the 27-year-old German rider was largely dictated at the start by a crash in front of him at turn one. When the rider fell ahead of him, it forced Stefan almost to a stop to which naturally cost him a lot of ground to the leaders. From the very back of the field, Bradl fought back as he went from 21st place to 14th in the first third of the race. Then, with a big gap to bridge from the riders ahead, Bradl rode a lonely race to cross the finish line in 11th at the end of the 23-lap encounter.
The Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team will now be on the road to Misano, where a two-day private test will be carried out from Wednesday with Stefan Bradl and test rider Michele Magnoni. The next round of the 2017 FIM Superbike World Championship will take place at the same track in three weekends time.
Stefan Bradl 6
We made a couple of changes to the chassis set-up before the race to improve the rear-end grip and it turned out to be a little bit better. Just after the start of the race, though, at turn one Krummenacher crashed in front of me and I had to brake and almost stop, so I lost a lot of time. I found myself last so I had to do my best to recover as many positions as possible. Eleventh place is an OK result, but there is still a lot of work to do, but fortunately we have a test coming up in Misano which will be very important for us.
Before the race we decided to make a couple of adjustments to the set-up and things improved. Still, we seem to be skirting around the problem because we haven’t yet found the right throttle connection for Stefan. We will take this 11th place, though, and get ready for the Misano test, where we’ll be able to evaluate a lot of new material. We will welcome back Michele Magnoni, who was also our test rider some years ago. He will help us to go through all the things we have to try and hopefully we will be able to make that step forward we’ve been looking for.