Cluzel Seventh In Istanbul

/ September 16, 2013

Jules Cluzel took a pair of seventh placed finishes in Turkey this weekend, with the World Superbike rookie flying the FIXI Crescent Suzuki flag solo after Leon Camier’s run of misfortune continued.

Camier suffered a high speed crash in Friday practice, resulting in seven fractures to his right foot, as well as a hairline fracture to his ankle and damage to his elbow. He’s now undergoing rehabilitation in a bid to be fit for the final round of the season at Jerez in October.

Cluzel put his GSX-R1000 superbike on the second row of the grid, and followed it up two sevenths in both of Sunday’s races. Grip issues cost the Frenchman a higher placed finish in race one, before a small mistake saw him drop back from the leading group in race two.

Cluzel said, “It’s been a really interesting weekend as a whole. I was a bit disappointed with the first race because I had the feeling I could fight for fifth place. I fought a bit with the other guys for that position, but at the end I was not able to pass them.

“For the second race we had a lot more data and had done a lot more laps so we had more information. We made some big changes in the chassis and I felt some differences, but they were not so easy to understand.

“I made some mistakes in the race and I did some good lap-times, but the really interesting point was the last part of the race: I tried to be calmer and understand how the traction was working and how the bike was different. This helped how to learn how the bike could be better and me also.

“I think I understand a lot more now and I’m looking forward to the next race because we have more information and I will have time to think about this weekend. I am happy with two seventh places, but I had the feeling we could be stronger. I now need to improve next time.”

Paul Denning, Team Manager, added, “Jules worked really hard today and rode at a very competitive level; the lap-time gap to the podium guys was not so big, but what cost him the chance to battle for a top-five place was errors in both races – maybe just trying too hard in the wrong places.

“However, it was very positive that he was able to re-group, re-find his rhythm and also learn a lot about some new electronic settings that he has been working with here in Istanbul. Even if we’re a little bit frustrated with the positions, Jules enjoyed riding the bike today and definitely learnt a lot and he is a positive mood for the trip to the USA.”