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Phillip Island WSBK: Checa fights back with race-two win; Sykes third

Althea Ducati's Carlos Checa made amends for his first World Superbike race crash at Phillip Island by taking the second outing spoils and clawing back five points from series leader Max Biaggi who had a nightmare start, taking to the grass in the first corner.

Biaggi went straight on at Doohan's on lap one after taking evasive action at 140mph to avoid crashing into the rear of Tom Sykes' Kawasaki after Sykes clipped his front brake lever. He re-joined in dead last with an eight-second deficit but made his way effortlessly back through the pack to bag second place and 20 points with four laps to go.

Checa made short work of Sykes and Honda's Jonathan Rea to take the lead on lap five, clearing off into the distance and winning by a six-second margin as Biaggi gave chase. The British pair scrapped it out for the last podium place and Sykes nabbed it by a single tenth over the line as Rea's tyre gave up and he lost drive coming out of the final turn.


Heroic Leon Haslam, racing with a pinned right leg and fractures in both feet, beat team-mate Marco Melandri for fifth place and a bagful of points while Maxime Berger was the first of two Effenbert Ducatis home in seventh after harrying the works BMW pair for most of the 22 laps.

Eugene Laverty, also injured with a broken hand, made up for his first-race retirement with an eighth place while Hiro Aoyama and Nico Canepa finalised the top ten places. Fixi Suzuki's Leon Camier got a bad start and sank back through the pack but eventually finished in 12th while team-mate Josh Brookes took the final championship point in 15th.

Biaggi leaves Australia with a 15 point lead over Melandri with Sykes third, Checa fourth and Rea fifth, 23 points behind the Aprilia man.

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