Losail (Qatar),

Sandro Cortese on Yamaha is the new FIM Supersport World Champion, WorldSBK Race 2 cancelled due to safety conditions

After a breathtaking head-to-head with Frenchman Jules Cluzel, the team Kallio Racing rider is the first German to win a FIM Supersport World Championship since the year 2000 when Jörg Teuchert won

Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki) and Sandro Cortese (Yamaha) are the Pirelli Best Lap Awards winners for having done the most race fast laps in their respective classes

German rider of Italian origin Sandro Cortese was crowned FIM Supersport 600 World Champion after the exciting race held today at the Losail International Circuit of Doha, Qatar. This makes the team Kallio Racing Yamaha rider the first German rider to win a FIM Supersport World Championship since the year 2000, when Jörg Teuchert was champion.

Due to the bad weather conditions that had a heavy impact on the day, after the WorldSSP600 race was held, the Championship organisation decided to cancel WorldSBK Race 2 due to safety conditions.

To conclude the day, Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki) and Sandro Cortese (Yamaha) were awarded as the Pirelli Best Lap Awards winners for having done the most race fast laps in their respective classes.

Pirelli finishes out its fifteenth season as Sole Tyre Supplier for all the classes in the MOTUL FIM World Superbike Championship with a positive final outcome. The Italian tyre manufacturer has always worked to improve its products both to the advantage of the riders who race in the factory derivative championship and in favour of all motorcycle riders who can purchase these products on the market since the tyres used are not prototypes, but standard solutions. In particular, in the Superbike class, during the season, Pirelli developed the new, larger size DIABLO™ Superbike tyres in 200/65 for the rear and 125/70 for the front which will be available already on the market next year, initially only in the SC0 compound for the rear and SC1 for the front. As for the DIABLO™ Supercorsa grooved product that is used in all the other categories of the championship, the company with the long "P" worked all season long to develop the new product, now in its third generation, which will be available for purchase from 2019.

The FIM Supersport 600 World Championship race was held with 2017 World Champion Lucas Mahias (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP team) in pole position ahead of the other Yamaha riders who were contending for the world title: German Sandro Cortese (Kallio Racing), second, and Frenchman Jules Cluzel (NRT) in third position. Race Direction reduced the number of laps from 15 to 12.

At the start, reigning champion Lucas Mahias got off the line well from pole position, but on the first turn he went wide, letting Jules Cluzel, Corentin Perolari (GMT94 Yamaha) and Sandro Cortese overtake him. In the meantime, Hikari Okubo and Sam Hornsey were forced to retire due to contact on the track.

Cluzel tried to set the pace, but Cortese did not let him get away and, after overtaking Perolari, he stayed on his pipes until, during the second lap, the team Kallio Racing German managed to take the race lead. At the start of the third lap, however, he was forced to hand the lead back over to Cluzel. The team NRT Frenchman knew that, in order to win the title, he would have to finish the race first, so he tried to pull away from Cortese, but the German had no intention of giving in easily. On the fourth lap, Cortese overtook Cluzel again and was once again virtual World Champion. In the meantime, Luke Stapleford and Kyle Smith crashed.

At the start of the ninth lap, Cluzel tried to attack Cortese to take back the position he had lost. Succeeding, he was once again in the lead. Shortly thereafter, Mahias also managed to overtake Cortese, but the German was able to counter-attack the factory Yamaha rider.

Gaining the upper hand among the title contenders was Lucas Mahias who moved into the race lead. At that point, it was all uphill for Cluzel. In the final laps, the Frenchman pulled out all the stops, but during the very last lap, he was forced to throw in the towel in the battle for the title, due to a sliding crash. The race was won by Lucas Mahias and Sandro Cortese, with his second-place finish, was crowned 2018 FIM Supersport World Champion. Third place went to Federico Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP team).

WorldSSP standings:

1) L. Mahias (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP team)
2) S. Cortese (Kallio Racing)
3) F. Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP team)
4) T. Gradinger (NRT)
5) R. Krummenacher (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team)
6) C. Perolari (GMT94 Yamaha)
7) H. Barbera (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing)
8) R. De Rosa (MV Agusta Reparto Corse by Vamag)
9) H. Soomer (Racedays)
10) P. Sebestyen (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda)
11) A. Badovini (MV Agusta Reparto Corse by Vamag)
12) L. Cresson (Kallio Racing)
13) J. Van Sikkelerus (GEMAR Team Lorini)
14) C. Stange (Team GoEleven Kawasaki)
15) N. Calero (Orelac Racing VerdNatura)
16) A. Murley (GEMAR Team Lorini)
RT) J. Cluzel (NRT)
RT) J. Iturrioz (Team GoEleven Kawasaki)
RT) G. Van Straalen (EAB antwest Racing)
RT) K. Smith (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda)
RT) L. Stapleford (Profile Racing)
RT) H. Okubo (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing)
RT) S. Hornsey (Profile Racing)

The Pirelli solutions chosen by the riders for WorldSSP600:

In the WorldSSP race, the riders were equally split in their preferences of the available solutions. In particular, on the front, the X0582 SC2 development tyre (option B) was used by 12 riders, whereas the X0012 SC1 development solution (option A) was used by 11. The situation was similar for the rear, where about half the riders on the grid opted for the standard SC0 (option A) and the other half went with the X0633 SC0 development solution (option B).

Pirelli statistics for WorldSSP race:

• Winner of the PIRELLI BEST LAP AWARD: Sandro Cortese (Kallio Racing), in 2'02.873 in the 5th lap

• Most used front solution: development SC2 X0582 (12 out of 23 riders)

• Most used rear solution: standard SC0 (12 out of 23 riders)

• Maximum race speed reached by Pirelli DIABLO™ Supercorsa tyres: 284.2 km/h, achieved by Federico Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP team) in the 2nd lap

• Number of solutions (dry, intermediate and wet) for the WorldSSP class: 4 front and 5 rear

Number of tyres available for each WorldSSP rider: 45, including 20 front and 25 rear

• Air temperature: 28° C

• Asphalt temperature: 29° C