Disastrous opening race for Davies

Published: 28 May 2016

Chaz Davies’ weekend went from bad to worse at Donington Park this afternoon as he crashed out of the opening race twice.

The Welshman’s weekend didn’t get off to the best of starts on Friday as he lost 40 minutes of track time following his Ducati Panigale R bursting into flames in the early stages of Free Practice 2.

Despite the lost track time, Davies qualified second on the grid for the opening race and vaulted off the line to take an early lead. Closely followed by team-mate Davide Giugliano, he remained at the front until he tucked the front end of the Panigale into Goddards on lap six.

Remounting, Davies was able to make headway in the second half of the race, moving up to eighth until his resurgence was cut short by another crash, this time at Coppice.

“I felt like I was trying to make up for lost time from yesterday, trying to feel things out as the race progressed,” Davies told MCN after the race. “We changed the set-up ahead of the race and it did change the way the bike felt mid corner. It felt a bit better than yesterday but I still crashed twice.

“I feel we never caught a rhythm yesterday after a lack of laps and when you miss half of the track time you’re given it’s not easy to make sure you’re sorted with a race set-up.”

The crash sees Davies lose vital championship points to rival Jonathan Rea, who now leads the Ducati man by 58 points in the title chase.