Race 1
WorldSBK 2024
Round 4

Top 10 for Lecuona in Race 1 at Misano as Vierge fights back after first lap crash

it Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli”

Team HRC riders Iker Lecuona and Xavi Vierge complete the first race making up the fourth Superbike World Championship round at the Misano World Circuit ‘Marco Simoncelli’ in tenth and sixteenth place respectively.

Top 10 for Lecuona in Race 1 at Misano as Vierge fights back after first lap crash

Team HRC riders Iker Lecuona and Xavi Vierge complete the first race making up the fourth Superbike World Championship round at the Misano World Circuit ‘Marco Simoncelli’ in tenth and sixteenth place respectively.

During the early morning FP3, which ran in fairly cool conditions, both Lecuona and Vierge improved on their times with respect to yesterday. Iker placed among the top five for a good part of the session, lowering his time by a couple of tenths to set a best time of 1’34.054. Xavi continued to take steps in the right direction, shaving off another half second to record a 1’34.122 as he worked with his team to make final preparations ahead of the Superpole.

Iker put in a 1’33.644 during the first few minutes of the Superpole qualifying phase. The Spaniard then made a second exit and pushed hard to improve his reference but a small issue during his final flying lap meant that this initial time remained his best. Lecuona thus qualified fourteenth, securing a spot on the fifth row of the grid. On the other side of the garage, Xavi recorded his fastest time, a 1’33.834, with one minute to go. This result saw him close seventeenth, for a place on the sixth row.

The first of the weekend’s races ran as scheduled at 2pm local time (CEST). From fourteenth, Lecuona was lying thirteenth through the opening lap. Holding that position in the initial stages, he found himself part of a close group of four or five riders all lapping with very similar times. He was able to pass one rival mid-race to move into twelfth and, from there, he worked hard to move in on the group ahead, his stronger pace allowing him to reach Bassani and pass him on lap 18. Iker continued to push hard to the line, concluding race 1 in tenth place.

Vierge was unfortunately hit by another rider and crashed on lap 1. Unhurt, he was able to get back on his bike and rejoin the race, albeit at the back of the field. The Spaniard had his work cut out to catch the pack but was lapping two seconds quicker than riders at the back of the field, which meant he reached them by the mid-race point. Twentieth on lap 13, Xavi gained a further four positions in the latter stages to finish a valiant sixteenth just out the point zone.

The racing weekend will conclude tomorrow with the Tissot Superpole race at 11:00 am and Race 2 at 2:00 pm local time (CEST).


Iker Lecuona
Iker Lecuona 7
Team HRC
Finally, a proper race, despite some frustration during qualifying, which was the only session of the weekend so far where we struggled to maintain a positive trend. Not being able to exploit the Q-tyre has often been a weakness for us. I took risks with both soft tyres and encountered a small issue with the bike on my second flying lap, forcing me to slow down midway. Consequently, I had to start from further down the grid, but I knew my potential was better than that. The first lap was tough as I got caught in traffic after the first corner and dropped to about eighteenth position, but I managed to overtake five riders at turn four, so not a bad start to the race overall. I held onto thirteenth place behind Tito (Rabat) for some time until he noticed I had better pace and made me pass, which meant I was able to chase down Bassani. I pushed hard while also taking care to manage the tyres and succeeded in passing him on lap 18. Towards the end, I kept pushing to closing in on Danilo, but then I preferred to finish the race safely, with only a couple of laps to go. It's been a while since I've been able to fight on track, enjoy overtaking, and have fun. So I’ll take this tenth place finish and work with the team to analyse the data collected today in order to hopefully make further improvements tomorrow, especially in terms of the front-end feeling.

Xavi Vierge
Xavi Vierge 97
Team HRC
Another challenging day this weekend, but with some positives to take away. While it's true we’re still not fast enough, we've worked hard in the garage to improve the feeling and setup of the bike compared to yesterday. We're still missing around half a second compared to the front runners, but we're pushing hard and getting all we can from what we have. Unfortunately, in Race 1, I was hit by another rider on the first lap and crashed. I managed to recover, rejoin the race, and finish to gather valuable data for tomorrow. My pace was consistent, and I believe without the incident, we could have been fighting for a position somewhere between eighth and twelfth. For now, that's our limit, so we need to stay focused and continue our efforts. Once again, I want to thank the entire team and everyone at HRC. Despite the challenges, everyone is doing their best, and we'll keep forging ahead in this way.



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