FIRST WORLD SUPERSPORT POLE FOR VAN DER MARK
Pata Honda’s Michael van der Mark took his debut World Supersport pole position for tomorrow’s fifth-round championship race at Donington Park in the UK after setting the fastest time in today’s wet qualifying session. The 21-year-old Dutch rider, who currently leads this season’s World Supersport series, guided his Honda CBR600RR around the slippery 4.023km Donington circuit in a time of 1m46.220s, more than three quarters of a second faster than second placed rider Kenan Sofuoglu.
Michael van der Mark: “I’m really pleased. We were really fast in the dry yesterday and I had a lot of fun, so I was a little disappointed that it was raining today. I didn’t really push this morning and just focused on the setting in the rain and we proved then that the set-up was working. It started to rain quite heavily at the start of the qualifying session and, when it stopped, I said to the guys that I needed to do more laps because I need to feel more confident. The track was really slippery and to take my first pole position in those conditions was the last thing I expected. But the bike feels good in wet or dry, so I’m really looking forward to tomorrow.”
Pieter Breddels – technical co-ordinator: “It’s been wet all day today and both guys struggled a little this morning. Michael’s changes worked out OK and he took a magnificent pole position. He was really strong and his times kept improving, so I think he can be a podium contender wet or dry.”