23 February 2019
Wagner takes drama-packed ASBK victory
Queenslander Aiden Wagner (Yamaha) has won race two in the opening round of the 2019 Australian Superbike Championship at Phillip Island, which ended in dramatic fashion after his Suzuki rival Wayne Maxwell came into contact on the final turn.
A determined Wagner came up on the inside of race one winner Maxwell, the pair touched, and Maxwell went down – his bike cartwheeling through the outfield in spectacular, fairing and chassis-crunching fashion.
Wagner remained upright and won the race by 0.261 seconds ahead of Cru Halliday (Yamaha), Josh Waters (Suzuki), Bryan Staring (Kawasaki), Mike Jones (Kawasaki) and defending champion Troy Herfoss (Honda).
Apart from a couple of fingers on his left hand going numb after the initial impact on the Phillip Island tarmac, Maxwell was unhurt – but it continued a rough and tumble day in the ASBK ranks after Troy Bayliss (Ducati) clipped the rear of Maxwell’s bike in race one and crashed at high speed.
Bayliss didn’t front the starter in race two, while Daniel Falzon (Yamaha) was another to crash in the second instalment.
Glenn Allerton (BMW), Matt Walkers (Kawasaki), Glenn Scott) Kawasaki) and rookie Max Croker (Suzuki) completed the top 10 in race two, as 30 riders completed the 12-lap distance.
The third and final race will be held at 10:30am on Sunday.
ASBK Race 2 results
1. Aiden Wagner – Yamaha
2. Cru Halliday – Yamaha +.261 s
3. Josh Waters – Suzuki +.331s
4. Bryan Staring – Kawasaki +1.594s
5. Michael Jones – Kawasaki +1.670s