American Kenny Noyes (Palmeto Kawasaki ZX10R) saw his 14-point lead in the FIM CEV International Championship converted to a 9-point deficient at the tight and slippery Albacete circuit that saw many crashes on a hot Spanish day. After qualifying second, Noyes went into the lead from the start and had opened a lead of four tenths of a second when he crashed on lap 5 at the entrance to the Albacete chicane and was unable to continue.
The race was won by Ángel Rodriguez (Suzuki GSX-R 1000) when leader Ivan Silva (BMW S1000RR) ran wide and off the track with two laps to go, dropping from first to fifth and giving away 14 points. Even so the BMW rider moved to within three points of Noyes.
Race began with Noyes, Silva, Rodriguez and Dani Rivas (BMW S1000RR) in a tight group. Rodriguez crashed out of fourth on lap 5 as Silva and Noyes opened a slight gap over Rivas. On lap 10 Noyes went into the lead but a lap later Silva passed him at the end of the straight and left the American no room and no choice but to go on to the gravel at over 100 miles per hour. He managed to avoid a crash and get the bike turned in the short run-off area, losing 12 seconds and rejoining the race in 6th place.
Silva went on to win, but Noyes fought back to finish fourth, salvaging 13 valuable points. With four races to go, Noyes trails Silva by nine points and with 100 points still in play.
Kenny Noyes: “I think we were really unlucky in Albacete. We could have left there with at least two podiums and it was disappointing to lose so many points on a day when we were fast in all sessions and both races. I struggled during the weekend with front-end feel, but we seemed to have a good set-up in race one until I lost the front with no warning and in a place where I wasn´t expecting it.
In race two I was being more conservative but Silva got into me pretty hard at the end of the home straight. It was a dangerous pass. He hit my brake lever and I had to run off the track. Luckily I kept it on two wheels and was able to save some points.
Looking back at a tough weekend, we crashed out of the lead in one race and got knocked off the track while leading in the other, so we just need to keep doing what we´re doing and hope for a little better luck next time.
I also want to congratulate my teammate Robertino Pietri for his two podiums.
Race 5 of 10
Rodriguez (Suzuki GSX-R1000)
Barragan (Kawasaki ZX10R) +2.875
Pietri (Kawasaki ZX10R) +3.756
Rivas (BMW S1000RR) +9.349
Silva (BMW S1000RR) +15.209
Race 6 of 10
Silva (BMW S1000RR)
Rivas (BMW S1000RR) +3.189
Pietri (Kawasaki ZX10R) +12.316
Noyes (Kawasaki ZX10R) +18.155
Barragan (Kawasaki ZX10R) +21.405
1. Silva 97 (1 win); 2. Noyes 88 (3 wins); 3. Pietri 86; 4. Barragan 85; 5. Rivas 69; 6. Rodriguez 49 (1 win); 7. Ferrer 49; 8. Morales 45 (1 win); 9. Garcia 36; 10. Mateos 32.
Next round: Navarra, September 7.
Noyes took his third straight pole and his third consecutive win at the Circuit of Barcelona-Catalunya to extend his points lead from 5 to 14. The American battled four-times Spanish national champion Carmelo Morales (Calvo Kawasaki ZX10R) wheel to wheel for almost 16 of the 17 laps of the fourth race of the FIM CEV Repsol International Championship and nothing was settled as the two entered the stadium section at the end of the penultimate lap.
Kenny, starting from the pole, and Morales, starting second, exchanged the lead several times in the first half of the race. Morales then seemed content to follow until Noyes slowed to force the Spaniard to go to the front. Morales refused to take the bait for an entire lap and a half, content to shadow the American. But when the pace dropped from the 45s to the 47s, Morales made a bid to break away and managed in a single lap to open a .6 of a second lead on lap 14. Noyes needed two laps to close the gap back to a bike length. It looked like it would go down to wire, but Morales lost the front and crashed out and into the tire barriers in the second-gear right-hander three corners from the finish line.
The battling pair had pulled 16 seconds clear of the three-rider scrap for third when the crash occurred and Noyes was able to cruise home to win by over 12 seconds. He began the season by being taken out on the first lap and left Jerez with no points. Coming into Catalunya he led Morales and former champion Ivan Silva (Targobank BMW S1000RR) by 5 points. He leaves with a 14-point lead over Silva who was beaten in a battle for second by Dani Rivas (Easyrace BMW S1000RR).
Morales, who won the season opener and was second to Noyes in Race 1 at Motorland, has failed to score in the last two races, taken out on the first turn in race 2 at Motorland two weeks ago and falling here today in Catalunya. He was taken to Granollers Hospital where he was found to have broken both ankles.
The next round, at Albacete on July 6, is a double-header.
Kenny Noyes: “I knew the only way to beat Carmelo here was to push hard from the beginning. I tried to get away and couldn´t. and I knew Carmelo wanted to sit on my rear wheel and prepare a pass on the final lap, so I slowed the pace down so much that he decided to take the lead. He surprised me with a real change of pace. We had both done a single high 1´44 early in the race when the tires were fresh but I didn´t expect him to do a 45 flat. He suddenly took .6 of a second lead. And I had to really dig deep to close on him again. I was right on his rear wheel again when he crashed. I was planning to pass him at the end of the straight but I know he would have fought back and that last lap would have been crazy. I wish Carmelo a speedy recovery and hope to see him back in action real soon.
Race 4 of 10
1. Noyes-USA75 (3 wins); 2. Silva-Spain 61: 3. Barragan-Spain 54: 4. Pietri-Venezuela 54; 5. Morales-Spain 45 (1 win) 45; 6. Ferrer-Spain 36; 7. Rivas-Spain 36; 8. Rodríguez-Spain 24; Pachard-France 21; Kuparinen-Finland 20.
Next round: Albacete, June 6.
American Kenny Noyes (Kawasaki ZX10R) came into Motorland Aragon with no points and left as double winner and the new leader of the FIM CEV International Superbike Championship. It was a perfect weekend with pole position backed up by both wins and new race and fastest lap records.
In race one Noyes shot away from the pole and led all 15 laps to take his first win on a 1000cc SBK after four years riding Moto2 bikes at World and CEV level. His margin of victory in race one was just over 4 seconds from reigning class champion Carmelo Morales of Spain. Spaniard Santiago Baragan was a further 2 seconds back to complete an all-Kawasaki podium.
In race two run under much hotter conditions (track temperature was over 120 degrees), Noyes led the opening lap but was passed by his Venezuelan team mate Robertino Pietri on lap 2 and then by Dani Rivas (BMW S1000RR). Once he felt more confident with the front tire Kenny re-passed Rivas and set about pulling back Pietri´s .3 second lead. Rivas crashed on lap 5 battling with eventual third-place finisher Ivan Silva (BMW S1000RR). Championship leader Morales was taken out by another rider in a wild first corner incident and was unable to return to the track.
Kenny passed Robertino on lap six but it took six laps build up a one-second lead. He went on to win by 3.5 seconds. With Morales out of action after his first-lap crash, Noyes went into the championship points lead with a five-point advantage over Morales and Silva with Pietri, who took his first CEV podium, moving up to fourth, just 6 points back.
For Noyes, who runs the Noyes Camp Dirt Track School at Motorland, it was a perfect weekend: pole, double wins and both race and lap records at the demanding 3.15 mile circuit. Next race takes place at Noyes´ favorite track, the Circuit of Catalunya, in two weeks.
Kenny Noyes: “After getting taken out at Jerez I thought it would take four or five races to work my way into the points lead, but this time the bad luck was for Carmelo (Morales). We´ve still got seven rounds to go but we´re right back in the fight and with a five-point lead. I had a very good feeling in the front in race one and was able to push from the start. I put my head down and read my board. The bike felt perfect and I was able to run the first seven laps in 52s and finish running 53s.
Race two was a lot harder. I decided, even though the temperature was 10-12 degrees higher, to stick with the package I had in race one because the front was giving a lot of feel, but on the opening laps with a fresh rear I was pushing the front and tucking it. I had to sit back and be patient when Robertino and Rivas passed Once I felt the grip go down a bit on the rear, I could push without tucking the front so much. Robertino was going real well and it wasn’t easy to get away.
It is really good for that Robertino is so fast this year because we trade data and that helps both of us. I was worried about this track because I had only raced here on a Moto2 and that´s completely different than a Superbike. Now we go to a couple of tracks where I have always been fast: Catalunya and Albacete. Since this is now an International Championship I got to stand on top of the podium for the US National Anthem twice. That made the day even better!”
Race 1: 1. Noyes (USA/Kawasaki); 2. Morales (Spain/Kawasaki), 3. Baragan (Spain/Kawasaki), 4. Silva (Spain/BMW) 5. Pietri (Venezuela/Kawasaki)
Race 2: 1. Noyes; 2. Pietri; 3. Silva; 4 Ferrer (Spain/Kawasaki); 5. Kuparinen (Finland/BMW)
Pole: Noyes 1´52.713
Fastest Lap: Noyes (Race 1) 1´52.635 (record)
Championship Standings After 3 Rounds
1. Noyes (USA) 50 (2 wins)
2. Morales (Spain) 45 (1 win)
3. Silva (Spain) 45
4. Pietri (Venezuela) 44
5. Baragan (Spain) 43
Kenny Noyes started from the pole and had worked all weekend with the team to find a set-up that would allow him to keep a strong pace for the entire 17 laps but he was taken out by a rider trying an impossible move on the first lap. Robertino Pietri rode an excellent race, running toward the end of the race at a very competitive pace.
Kenny Noyes (Pole Position--DNF) "It was a perfect weekend right up until Dani Rivas took me out in a crazy attempt to go from fourth to first in one corner of the first lap. We´re fortunate that there are nine races left and the bike and team are working perfectly so we are still in with a good chance of fighting for the title. Looking at the lap times, I know we would been there for a good scrap with Carmelo (Morales) for the win, I can´t wait for the next round, a Superbike double-header in Motorland.