Wet weather interrupted the third round of the World Superbike series on Sunday, but Regis Laconi and Pierfrancesco Chili mastered the tricky track conditions with aplomb.

Wet weather interrupted the third round of the World Superbike series on Sunday, but Regis Laconi and Pierfrancesco Chili mastered the tricky track conditions with aplomb.


In the first of the two Superbike races San Marino the victor's laurels went to French factory Ducati rider Laconi, who hunted down and caught leader Troy Corser shortly before rain halted the race early. The result made Laconi the first rider to win two races in 2004, while Corser handed Carl Fogarty's team their best ever result.


The lap count at that point was 17 (out of 25), providing a full points score for all riders who finished in the top 15. In third place was Chili, on his 998 Ducati, ahead of a charging Noriyuki Haga and the yellow Ten Kate Honda of Chris Vermeulen.


Race two began under fully wet conditions, but as the asphalt dried out it was Chili, again on a 998, who benefited and after a slow start the Italian legend charged through the pack at up to two seconds per lap faster than his peers.


Chili caught a sliding Laconi on the final lap to grab a dramatic victory - and give World SBK its fifth different winner in six races this season.


Completing the race two podium was DFX Ducati's Steve Martin - 32 seconds behind Chili, while Haga took another fourth ahead of Renegade Ducati team-mate Leon Haslam, who equalled his best finish of the season.


Mauro Sanchini put his improving Bertocchi Kawasaki ZX-10 into the lead for four laps in race two, before sliding back to 11th due to his tyre choice.


After three rounds of the 2004 season, Chili now heads the championship with 97, twenty more than James Toseland, who had two tough rides today - finishing tenth and sixth respectively - while Laconi and Vermeulen share third with 70-points.

Original article from Car