Cluzel confident for Superpole 2

CIA Landlord Insurance Honda rider Jules Cluzel ended the first day of Free Practice at Assen in 7th position and the Frenchman is confident there is more to come for qualifying in tomorrow’s Superpole 2.  Jules said: “So it was a difficult day.  This morning we had some rain and we had stress because we were expecting more for the afternoon.  The target this morning was to stay in the top ten and we did that.  This afternoon was more relaxed and we worked better and found some solutions.  P7 is not the best we can do so I am confident for tomorrow.”

Hikari Okubo’s opening day at Assen was frustrated when he was brought down by oil dumped on the racing line from another rider’s blown engine at the end of the morning’s Free Practice 1 session, resulting in him spraining his ankle.  After treatment the Japanese rider was able to go out in Free Practice 2 and despite his injury, improved his lap time for 19th position.

Robin Mulhauser finished the day in 18th position and faces the difficult challenge to be one of the top two in Superpole 1 for entry to Superpole 2 tomorrow.

Hiromichi Kunikawa’s debut at TT Circuit Assen saw him 32nd on the time sheet and he remains positive ahead of qualifying tomorrow.

CIA Landlord Insurance Honda Team Manager, Simon Buckmaster said: “I am happy with the improvements we made to be in Superpole 2 and I am confident Jules is in a good position for qualifying.  Come the race we will have a good race pace and be able to challenge for the podium.  Robin will be a bit disappointed with 18th but he has the opportunity to improve in SP1.  Fortunately it was the left ankle that Hikari sprained and he will have more therapy in the Clinica Mobile so that he can work for a better position tomorrow. It was a brave ride by Hikari this afternoon.  Hiromichi is still learning the circuit and he has lots of work to do to improve.”

Free Practices Combined Results

  1. K. Sofuoglu 1’38.950
  2. P. Jacobsen +0.172
  3. F. Caricasulo +0.399
  4. L. Mahias +0.427
  5. K. Smith +0.697
  6. G. Rea +0.892
  7. J. Cluzel CIA Landlord Insurance Honda +0.906
  8. K. Ryde +0.956
  9. S. Morais +0.963
  10. M. Canducci +0.978

18. R. Mulhauser CIA Landlord Insurance Honda +1.757

19. H. Okubo CIA Landlord Insurance Honda +1.785

  1. H. Kunikawa CIA Landlord Insurance Honda +4.760