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Yamaha Riders Star in Epic WorldSBK and WorldSSP Battles at San Juan

Yamaha Riders Star in Epic WorldSBK and WorldSSP Battles at San Juan

The FIM Superbike World Championship paddock headed to the first of three overseas rounds in 2022, with Yamaha battling for victory across the weekend’s races at the Circuito San Juan Villicum.

Toprak Razgatlıoğlu made history in the Superpole Race, as he scored his 27th victory for Yamaha, drawing level with Noriyuki Haga at the top of the manufacturer’s all-time wins list. Elsewhere, Dominique Aegerter took a step closer to his second FIM Supersport World Championship title with another double victory.

Andrea Dosoli, Yamaha Motor Europe Road Racing Manager, was encouraged by the weekend’s performances overall: “It was great to see the passion of the Argentina fans in San Juan, with our riders racing in front of nearly 80,000 spectators. We had three days of good weather and have witnessed another five fantastic races across both classes. It has been a positive weekend for Yamaha, scoring a double win in WorldSSP and a victory in WorldSBK on Sunday. It was nice to see that despite the challenge of the first flyaway round, all our teams were very well prepared.”

Razgatlıoğlu Rebounds with Mesmerising Sunday Performance

After smashing the lap record to claim pole position, Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK’s Razgatlıoğlu made a rare mistake in Race 1 while attempting to repass Alvaro Bautista for the lead, which saw him tumble down the order. 

On Sunday though, he bounced back in style to claim the SPRC victory; pulling off a daring overtake on the Ducati rider at the corner he crashed at in Race 1. The Turkish star was the only rider capable of challenging Bautista for victory in Race 2, capping of the Argentinian round with a hard fought second-place result.   

“Toprak started very well in Argentina, which is a technical race track, where the riders can make the difference. He had a strong start to the weekend, topping the combined times on Friday and he carried that into qualifying with pole position. Unfortunately, during the first lap of Race 1 he made a very rare mistake, something that can happen when you are always riding at the limit of the package. It was an amazing reaction on Sunday, with a fantastic Superpole Race performance, overtaking Alvaro in the corner where he crashed the day before. This confirmed the confidence he has on the bike and it was amazing to watch. The same can be said for Race 2, where he was the only rider able to fight with Alvaro for the victory, He was clearly fastest in three of the four sectors, but this wasn’t enough in the end. Congratulations to Toprak and the team for a great job during the weekend, considering how the track conditions continuously changed throughout every session.”

Andrea Locatelli enjoyed a promising start to the weekend, with third in the opening free practice session. However, a difficult qualifying meant he had work to do from outside the top 10 on the grid, but he was still able to recover to a pair of eighth place finishes.

GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team’s Garrett Gerloff was unable to make progress after being shuffled back in the opening stages of each of the races, while teammate Kohta Nozane saw an improved performance compared to the front-runners, but narrowly missed out on points.  

“Like his teammate, Andrea enjoyed a good start to the weekend, but unfortunately the Superpole didn’t go to plan, and he struggled a little in the opening laps. As soon as he had clear track in front of him he was able to show good pace. For the coming events, we know he needs to focus on the qualifying and to be more competitive in the beginning. It was a similar situation for Garrett. We tried a few different things with the set-up on Friday and Saturday, which perhaps meant that he wasn’t prepared in the best way for the first race. On Sunday, we expected a better performance, but it was compromised by an issue with the rear tyre spinning on the rim, creating some vibrations. He still did well to finish where he did, and in Mandalika we expect him to be back towards the front. Kohta made improvements compared to recent rounds, and wasn’t too far away from his teammate. He just missed out on points but we definitely saw a step forward, particularly in the second half of the race.” 

Aegerter Closes on 2022 Title

Ten Kate Yamaha WorldSSP Supported Team’s Dominique Aegerter took his winning tally to 15 for the season, with a pair of intelligent and commanding rides in San Juan. Title rival, Evan Bros Yamaha WorldSSP Supported Team’s Lorenzo Baldassarri, showed rapid improvement throughout the weekend on his first outing at the South American venue, battling for victory until the last lap in Race 2, before a force neutral issue saw him drop to third.

“We saw another masterpiece by Dominique, who won both races thanks to his speed and maturity managing the race. Congratulations to him and his crew for another double victory, he is now very close to a second title. It was also interesting to see the progression shown by Lorenzo in Argentina. It’s not an easy track to learn, but by Sunday he was fighting for the win. He lost the chance only on the last lap due to the force neutral issue. On a race track where Jules has been successful in the past, it was nice to see him fighting again for a good result this time out. The last two rounds will surely be demanding for the teams, but we wish them the best of luck in Indonesia and Australia.”