Motorcycling: Fleet Falappa the star

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The Independent Online
THE unpredictable Giancarlo Falappa did well to maintain his poise in the face of treacherous conditions at Brands Hatch yesterday and dominated the opening two matches in the Victors SBK 1993 Superbike World Championship.

The 29-year-old Italian with a reputation for erratic riding showed immaculate control on a wet track by steering his Roche Ducati around a circuit littered with crashed bikes. He won the first leg by nearly 40 seconds and the second by just under 20. Second on both occasions was the Californian Scott Russell on a Kawasaki. He had been fastest in practice but in the wet Falappa was in a class of his own.

Two leading Britons - pre-race favourites Carl Fogerty on another Ducati and local man Terry Rymer on a Yamaha - both crashed on the first lap of the first leg. Fogerty's bike was too badly damaged to race again, but Rymer was fifth in the second leg.

James Whitham from Halifax fell in both races while challenging strongly and Scotland's Brian Morrison spoiled his third place achievement in the first leg by crashing second time out.

VICTORS SBK SUPERBIKE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP (Brands Hatch) 1993 World Superbike first leg (22 laps, 57 miles): 1 G Falappa (It) Ducati 41min 21.12sec (ave speed 83mph); 2 S Russell (US) Kawasaki 41:57.96; 3 B Morrison (GB) Kawasaki 41:58.93; 4 A Morillas (Fr) Kawasaki 42:22.51; 5 A Slight (NZ) Kawasaki 42:44.45; 6 S Mertens (Bel) Ducati 42:49.42. Fastest lap: Falappa 1:49.63 (85.38 mph). Second leg (24 laps, 62 miles): 1 Falappa, 43m 3.34 secs (86.96 mph); 2 Russell, 43:22.35; 3 F Pirovano (It) Yamaha 43:25.28; 4 Mertens, 43:25.5; 5 T Rymer (GB) Yamaha 43:31.99; 6 Slight, 43:54:66. Fastest lap: Falappa 1:45.37 (88.83 mph).