VAN DER MARK SECOND ON PORTIMÃO GRID
Pata Honda rider Michael van der Mark put his Honda CBR600RR in second place on the grid for tomorrow’s eighth round World Supersport race in Portugal in today’s qualifying session at the Autodromo Internacional Algarve. The Dutch flyer’s time was just 0.078s behind that of pole position man, Kenan Sofuoglu, but van der Mark, 21, set an impressive race pace during the third free practice session this morning and is confident for tomorrow’s 18-lap race at the 4.592km circuit.
Michael van der Mark: “I’m really happy with today because this morning we did a race simulation with a few changes to the set-up which worked very well. The pace was really fast which I was happy with but this afternoon’s qualifying was a bit of a messy session. The strong wind came in and we tried some other things which didn’t really work. But we are in P2 and really close to Kenan Sofuoglu who is in pole position and Jules Cluzel is also on the front row. It should be a good fight, but I think my race pace is OK and I’m really looking forward to tomorrow.”
Pieter Breddels (technical co-ordinator): “Michael did a very good run this morning when he was putting in really quick times. The grip went down a little bit in qualifying and it was harder to do the times. We tried a few changes which didn’t really work but he is second on the grid and has a really good race rhythm.”