CIA Landlord Insurance Honda’s Jules Cluzel will start Round 4 of the 2017 World Supersport Championship at Assen from the second row of the grid in 5th position following Superpole 2 today.
In sunny but cool conditions at the historic Dutch circuit the 28-year-old took a big step forward posting a time of 1’38.602, 1.2s faster than yesterday. He said: “I am happy with today we improved in every session. Step by step we are getting stronger and closer to the leader. Even if Kenan has a gap we get closer so that’s the target. Yesterday I was 7th, this morning 6th and this afternoon 5th so I think it should be possible to fight for the podium. It looks like we can do it and we will have to see how the race goes because we are a big group and it will be a hard fight for sure. We need to be strong, concentrate and be ready for the fight.”
Despite still suffering the effects of his crash in FP1 on Friday, Japan’s Hikari Okubo improved in SP1 to qualify 17th on the grid.
Robin Mulhauser also improved his lap time in Superpole 1 putting him in 20th position but due to a penalty he received in FP1 he is demoted three places on the grid to start the race in 23rd spot. Also victim of the same penalty is teammate Hiromichi Kunikawa who qualified 30th but will start the race from 32nd.
CIA Landlord Insurance Honda Team Manager, Simon Buckmaster said: “Jules made a big step today. We’ve worked hard this weekend and we’ve improved a lot. We now need to make it more comfortable to do this lap time and then we will be in a good position to challenge for the podium.
Hikari did a good job to improve his lap time with his injured ankle. He is a fighting rider and I’m sure he will challenge for good points in the race tomorrow.
It is going to be hard for Robin from 23rd but he needs to stay calm and fight to get into the points in the race.
A really good improvement from Hiromichi. He has gone 1.7s faster than his best yesterday and he continues to improve and learn the tracks. It’s a building experience for him and we are working to improve again for the race tomorrow and get a good strong finish. Overall a good job and we are pleased. It’s going to be another exciting race and once again we will be challenging for the podium with Jules.”
Free Practices & Superpole Combined Results
- K. Sofuoglu 1’37.805
- P. Jacobsen 1’38.479
- M. Canducci 1’38.556
- L. Mahias 1’38.589
- J. Cluzel CIA Landlord Insurance Honda 1’38.602
- S. Morais 1’38.618
- L. Stapleford 1’38.738
- K. Smith 1’38.772
- F. Caricasulo 1’39.148
- K. Ryde 1’39.292
- H. Okubo CIA Landlord Insurance Honda 1’40.156
- R. Mulhauser CIA Landlord Insurance Honda 1’40.518
- H. Kunikawa CIA Landlord Insurance Honda 1’42.057