The Australian rider and five time champion of Qatar Superbike won the two races of the opening round of 2015 /2016 Qatar Superbike Championship held yesterday at Losail International Circuit.
In a very humid weather, the defending champion managed to take the win in both races , with a tought battle with the runner up of last season, Mishal Al Naimi who finished second in both races.In the first race, even Cudlin had the pole position, Al Naimi managed to lead the race for the first four laps but the Australian overtook the Qatari rider in the fifth lap, keeping the first position until the end, finishing only 0.887 ahead of Mishal.
Mishal had some problems with his racing bike in the qualifying session and he had to race with his second bike that didn’t hve a perfect set up.
The third position was for Nasser Al Malki, who made a great start as he was last in the grid and managed to be in fourth place already in the second lap. Al Malki kept the fourth position almost the whole race , very close to Nina Prinz who finally lost her third position and finished in fourth place.
The fifth place was for Saeed Al Sulaiti who had some problems during the practice sessions but finally managed to set up the bike and get good results .
In the new category in the Superbike, Veterans category, the winner was the Irish Suzuki rider, Paul Etherton who finished in seventh place overall. British riders Martin Bexon and Mark Schulz, ended in second and third place respectively in the Veterans podium.
For Cudlin the second race was better and won it ahead of Al Naimi with a gap of 9.985. Al Naimi continued with his bike problems and finished again second in the race. The Qatari rider Saeed Al Sulaiti finished in third place.
In the second race , for the veterans category, the win was again for Paul Etherton and Mark Schulz finished in second place. The Kuwaiti rider Mujahed Al Khashram finished in third place in veterans.
Trophies were presented by Sheikh Atbi Al Sabah (Kuwait Quarter Mile Club Representative), Mr. Mohamed Saad Al Morraikhi (QMMF General Secretary) and Mr. Salah bin Eidan, Manager SIRBB Circuit Kuwait.
The next round of Qatar SUperbike will be on 16th & 17th October as the support race of the World Superbike Championship Qatar Round.
In the eventing, there was the official photo of the season with all the riders and Mr. Nasser Khalifa Al Attiyah, QMMF President, LIC General Manager and FIM Deputy President.
‘First of all I would like to really thank to all the riders and teams that participate in this championship. Today is the begining of the season and we are very happy to accommodate everybody again. We are very excited to have this championship started with more motivation from the teams and riders and for sure there will be a good action and good challenge between the riders .With the changes in this season, the slpit of the two categories, 1000cc and 600cc will give more accurate challenge to all the races , so we don’t have too many riders at the same time and too much traffic on the track and avoid any accident. Thanks to all the organzation and the media who support us and hope to have a great season’ said QMMF President.
‘I am very happy with the results, obviously win the two races is perfect for the championshp, it is the way we wanted to start .The bike is a bit slower in the straight compared to Mishal and we need to fix this if it is posible for the next round to be more strong, but the chassis of the bike is perfect, the handling of the bike is very good and the team did a perfect job with the bike’ Cudlin said after winning the races.
‘In the first I had a problem with the chatter in the bike so Mishal was able to hold on to me for all the race but finally I managed to win the race’ said Cudling after race one.
Mishal Al Naimi
‘I am happy with the results. Yesterday I had some problems with my racing bike in the Qualifying and today I had to ride with another bike that had a problem with the gear box and I couldn’t go faster with this problem and fight close to Alex. For the next round , I will try to fix the problem with the gear box and try to push for the win. Thanks to Ooredoo for their support and to QMMF for the champioship’ Al Naimi said after the race.
Saeed Al Sulaiti
‘In general the weekend was good. Yesterday , from the begining the bike was new for me, so we tried to set up the bike. The two free practices went with a lot of problems but we solved the problem in the qualifying and the mechanics did a great job to set up the bike. Today the first race was not very good, problem with a big chattering , and a lot of sliding the rear tyre, less grip and I was trying to get the best position I can. For the second race, the team modifed a Little bit the bikes and it was really good, in the first laps I felt really confident but in the five last laps I had some sliding but I managed to keep the gap between me and Nasser who was chasing me from the begining of the race. I am happy to be in the podium and to get this first trophy in the first round. Thanks to QMMF for their hard work and to Mr. Nasser Khalifa Al Attiyah for his support.
‘I am absolutely thrilled, I knew that in the main race it will be difficult to be on the podium but with this new categroy, it is a great idea as it encourages more riders to join the champiosnhip and ride with us. Both races were very good for me and I am very pleased for West Bay Racing and sponsors to be able to provide them these two wins, it was brilliant and I hope they can continue their support and thanks to QMMF for the great organization of this championship’ Etherton said after the races.