Autódromo Internacional do Algarve
A strong performance saw Michael van der Mark (NED) from the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team aim for the podium in Saturday’s race at Portimão (POR). However, he was forced to retire six laps from the end, having fallen after another rider hit his rear wheel. Eugene Laverty (IRL), standing in for Tom Sykes (GBR) again at Portimão, finished the first race in ninth place. Jonas Folger (GER) from the Bonovo MGM Racing team was racing at Portimão for the first time and crossed the line in 15th position. The Portuguese racetrack is hosting the eleventh round of the FIM Superbike World Championship 2021 (WorldSBK).
In Superpole on Saturday morning, van der Mark claimed fifth place in the second row of the grid, on his BMW M 1000 RR. Laverty was also going well but fell after sliding during the closing stage of the qualifying session. That prevented him from bettering the lap time already posted and he finished in 13th place. Folger finished Superpole in 19th position.
Van der Mark initially fell back a few places at the start of the first race. However, a great recovery performance saw him move back up to swiftly become part of the chasing pack battling for the third spot on the podium. However, his charge to the podium came to an end on lap 15 out of 20 when a rider touched his rear wheel on entry to turn five, causing him to fall. Van der Mark got back up and re-joined but was forced to head for the pits and retire. Laverty moved up into the top ten at the start. As the race progressed, he fell back a little but then found his rhythm, crossing the finish line in ninth place. After 20 race laps, Folger secured 15th place to score one point.