Dominique Aegerter went into Sunday's second race in France with an irrepressible will to win and set another important milestone in his title winning campaign.
However, the second race of the weekend at the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours began with a moment of shock for Dominique Aegerter and his Dutch Ten Kate Racing team. The 30-year-old Yamaha rider came to an innocent crash in the last chicane before the first pass at the start/finish line. The incident was triggered by Luca Bernardi, who was in the lead at the time and had turned in there a little too over-motivated. Aegerter then had to pull off the throttle and in the process Jules Cluzel, who was following him, crashed into his bike.
While Aegerter was able to bring his bike back to the pits by himself, Bernardi and Cluzel were taken to the track’s hospital for precautionary examinations. The race was stopped immediately and later restarted for twelve laps, as it had been the day before. During the short break, all team members had their hands full in Aegerter's pit to repair the bike until the restart, where the rider from Rohrbach showed nerves of steel. Despite a little bit of uncertainty as to whether everything was correct with the bike, he once again produced a lightning start from the front row. What followed was like a thriller. Aegerter and Spanish rider Manuel Gonzales delivered a tough fight at the head of the field, in which Gonzales had the better end for himself. Although Aegerter was determined to win, he was also highly satisfied with 20 points for second place.
Aegerter now has to skip the next event in Barcelona. In two weeks' time, he will be giving his all in the final two races of this year’s MotoE™ World Cup season finale in Misano to make up for the title win he unfortunately lost a year ago. However, Aegerter will remain the overall leader in the Supersport World Championship until the race weekend after next.
#77 Dominique AEGERTER (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha, Yamaha YZF R6), Race 2: P2
"What a crazy race! But I think we gave the fans a great show. My thoughts are also with Luca Bernardi and Jules Cluzel at the same time, who I hope did not hurt themselves seriously. At the first start, everything went according to plan. I got away well, but at the end of the first lap Bernardi crashed right in front of me. I immediately closed the throttle and in the next moment Cluzel touched me at the rear. So, there was nothing left to save it, and we both crashed as well. At the first moment I felt a pain in my foot, and I did not really know what to do. But when I saw the red flag, I immediately picked up my bike and went back to the pits. I was not sure if I would make it there in time. But it worked out. This is why I want to dedicate this second place entirely to my team, because they got my bike ready to go again in less than ten minutes. They had to change almost everything on the right side. Starting at the front with the handlebars, the footrest, then the exhaust, and then the rear as well. It was only a few seconds before the pit lane was closed that I was able to go out."
"Before the re-start I was very nervous. But I relied fully on my guys, who assured me everything was fine again. So, I quickly bended out everything and tried to concentrate fully on the race, which worked well. The second start was great again. After that I led the race for most of the twelve laps. I also kept trying to build up a small lead. But that just did not happen today. I also realized that Gonzales was very close behind me, so I knew he would try it on the last lap. The last round was then the hammer par excellence because I really wanted to win myself. Although I lost this fight, we gained a lot of points for the championship compared to our first challenger and extended our lead. That was enormously important because I will be missing Barcelona in two weeks' time. At this weekend I am in Misano and will fight there for the title in the MotoE World Cup. But a week later I will be back in Jerez and from then on it is a matter of continuing to defend the world championship lead. But before that, a big thanks to the team, all the sponsors, my family and the many fans who came especially to this race to support me. Even though it was not enough for the win today, I am still very happy about second place and from Jerez onwards my full attention will be on this championship and the Ten Kate team again."
#FRAWorldSBK - WorldSSP Race 2 (12 Laps):
1 Manuel GONZALES / SPA / ParkinGo Yamaha / Yamaha YZF R6 / 20´23.172
2 #77 Dominique AEGERTER / SWI / Ten Kate Racing Yamaha / Yamaha YZF R6 / +0.155
3 Can ÖNCÜ / TUR / Kawasaki Puccetti Racing / Kawasaki ZX-6R / +1.438
1 #77 Dominique AEGERTER / SWI / Yamaha / 302
2 Steven ODENDAAL / RSA / Yamaha / 240
3 Philipp ÖTTL / GER / Kawasaki / 178