Toprak Leads Historic All-Yamaha WorldSBK Podium at Estoril

October 18 2020

Toprak Leads Historic All-Yamaha WorldSBK Podium at Estoril

Toprak Leads Historic All-Yamaha WorldSBK Podium at Estoril

Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Official Team with Rizla riders Toprak Razgatlıoğlu and Michael van der Mark celebrated an historic Yamaha podium lockout, alongside GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Junior Team’s Garrett Gerloff, in the FIM Superbike World Championship Tissot Superpole Race at Estoril today – the first time in WorldSBK history that Yamaha has taken all three podium positions.

Razgatlıoğlu’s win in the 10-lap sprint race was part of a near-perfect weekend following his first-ever pole position and win in Race 1 on Saturday. The young Turkish rider made another clean start in Race 2 this afternoon at the later time of 15:15, but with warmer track temperatures than yesterday, a repeat victory was a bigger challenge and he was forced to settle for a final 2020 podium with a very hard-fought third place. 

Signing off his four-year tenure with Pata Yamaha, Van der Mark joined Razgatlıoğlu on the podium this morning after one of the stand-out race fights of the year against Ducati rider Chaz Davies. He rode to a fine fourth place in Race 2 to round off his Yamaha career in a positive way. 

The official Yamaha team completes the reduced eight-round 2020 WorldSBK season with four race wins and 17 podium finishes, and now looks forward to challenging for title honours in 2021.

Toprak Razgatlıoğlu – SPRC: P1 / R2: P3

Today, the Superpole Race was again very good for me, it was a perfect way to win and the feeling was perfect, we were so fast. We worked hard for Race 2, as it was important to remain focused for the long race. I tried to win again, but it was not possible because my Yamaha R1 was sliding too much, which was very strange compared to the feeling I had in the previous races. But we’re happy to be on the podium again, it was a good weekend for me as I really need these podiums to help me push for more in the future. Thank you very much to my Yamaha team, they are amazing and worked so hard this weekend. It is was also Michael’s last race with us and I have enjoyed being his teammate this year – but, no problem, because he stays in the WorldSBK paddock and we will still be friends and also fight on the track!

Michael van der Mark - SPRC: P3 / R2: P4

It was a really good morning, in the Superpole Race I had a great battle with Chaz and finished third. Really happy with that, the bike felt amazing and I was ready for Race 2, but from the first lap I started to struggle with rear grip and I just couldn’t keep up with the guys in front of me, which was frustrating. Halfway through the race it started to feel better but then I started to struggle with the front. I wanted more in this last race, but in the end to finish fourth isn’t that bad and I think in general we had a good end to the season. You know, we always want more but it has been four fantastic years with this team and with Yamaha and I am really proud of all we have achieved. I want to thank everyone I have worked with over this time for all their efforts, because the progress we have made together has created some impressive results. I am thankful to everyone and will miss them.

Paul Denning - Team Principal

A great end to the season here in Estoril with Toprak again showing his real credentials with a lights-to-flag victory in the historic Superpole Race – the first ever podium lock-out by Yamaha in WorldSBK as Garrett Gerloff and Mikey backed up Toprak’s superb win. It was a beautiful day today which was great, apart from the fact that the modified timing of Race 2 to 15:15 and the sunshine saw the track temperature rise well above 30 degrees, which didn’t work quite as well for us as we’d hoped. In addition, the pace of the race was a big step over yesterday’s opener. It would have been nice to win all the races, but Toprak absolutely maximised all he had by finishing a very close third and Mikey rode a controlled race to round off his Yamaha career with a fine fourth. We will make a “shakedown” test tomorrow with Andrea Locatelli, his first laps on the Yamaha R1 superbike, which we are all looking forward to. Everyone connected with this team wishes Michael all the very best for his future, having been such a great asset to the project over the last four years.

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