The MIE Racing Honda team has completed the first of the WorldSBK weekend’s three races at the Nevers Magny-Cours circuit in France.

After three wet practice sessions, this morning’s Superpole phase saw riders again put in the rain tyres as they took to a still wet track. Takahashi worked hard over the 25-minute qualifying phase, continuing to gain experience around this new track layout while continuing to refine the set-up of his bike in light of the mixed conditions. The Japanese rider set a fastest time of 1’55.230 to finish twenty-first, which meant a seventh row start on the grid for the afternoon’s Race 1.

The weekend’s first Superbike race got underway at 2pm local time on a soaking wet track. From row seven of the grid, and feeling quite comfortable on his bike, the Japanese rider immediately attempted to push, doing his best to stick with the rest of the field, but he perhaps overdid it slightly, crashing quite early on at turn 5. Unhurt and able to return to the track and continue his race, Takumi then concentrated on rebuilding his confidence in the complicated conditions. Managing to make up a few places over the course of the 21-lap race but riding what was essentially a solitary race, Takumi eventually crossed the line in seventeenth place.

Takumi Takahashi 13

17th

“Today in Race 1 I felt quite a lot better than I did in the earlier FP3 and Superpole. Maybe I pushed a bit too much, first crashing and then running wide. The area of the bike we most improved on today was with the grip, and even if we’re not yet where we need to be, it’s positive ahead of tomorrow’s races. I also need to try and improve through the final sector of the track. If we can put all this together, we should be able to make a step forward tomorrow.”