Italian racers post best times
Team Italia has left a superb impression in today's qualifiers for the first of two SBX World Cup events staged this coming weekend in Feldberg, Germany.
Riders had to face some challenging conditions as fog and gusty winds made the time trials a lottery where you hit the jackpot if you were able to approach the roller straight towards turn four without any head wind.
One of the athletes benefitting from a perfect condition while on course was Lorenzo Sommariva who clocked in a 39.52.
A few more riders also managed to finish the 675 metres long course on Seebuck under 40 seconds such as Paul Berg (GER), Chris Robanske (FRA), World Cup leader Pierre Vaultier (FRA) and Jerome Lyman (SUI) while top athletes like Alex Pulling (AUS) got thwarted by the head wind on the slightly ascending roller section coming out of the turn number three.
“The wind definitely affected the times but the course is running really fun. There is a really strong head wind out of three which was sometimes there and sometimes not. This is why we have been seeing different times. But I think once the racing starts tomorrow there should be some good racing with the track being a bit bigger compared to last year,” said the two-time World Champion from Australia.
The current number two in the world also gave a little outlook on what to expect in tomorrow's finals:
“I guess we will play a little bit around with some tactics. I don't think you really need to do a full late drop though. It's more playing around with the positions. There is more space in the banks, so there are more lines available to be in a good position for the key straight which is a little bit uphill coming out of turn three. You don't want to be in front of your heat and get the head wind. It's not a good place to be. Trying not to let that happen is the aim.”
However, the finals will feature some interesting heats as some guys being forced to throw down a second qualifier run in order to make the field of 32 where able to post some really fast times, too.
Konstantin Schad (GER) actually came in with the fastest time of 39.42 but will be seated 17th while Michele Godino, another strong Italian today, also managed to bring down a 39.52 like Sommariva before with Emanuel Perathoner (ITA) crossing the line after 39.58 seconds, too.
In the women's event, Michela Moioli simply ruled the course with a 40.93 therefore being 0.75 seconds faster than Bansko winner Charlotte Bankes (FRA; 41.68) who finished as runner-up.
Overall, the women's qualifiers which were even more affected from the quickly changing fog conditions provided some huge time differences with Raffaella Brutto (ITA; 41.90) as third being already almost one second slower than her teammate.
In fact, Moioli was more than two seconds faster than her strongest pursuer in the Word Cup rankings. As Chloe Trespeuch (FRA) – currently second behind of Moioli in the standings – crossed the line after 43.04 seconds and therefore as seventh best of the first qualifiers round Moioli will be heading into tomorrow's knock out rounds as the one to beat.