The Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team has contested the opening race of the 2017 FIM Superbike World Championship today at Phillip Island, with Nicky Hayden and Stefan Bradl finishing eleventh and fifteenth respectively.

Hayden launched from eleventh place on the grid and was immediately eighth on board his Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2 machine as the World Superbike field entered turn one. The 35-year-old from Owensboro, Kentucky, kept himself in the fight for eighth place until the final three laps when, after losing a bit of ground, he returned eleventh at the flag.

Bradl gained three positions at the start and for the first half of the encounter he did his best to maintain the pace of the riders ahead. The 27-year-old German rider managed to remain within the top 15 and to score his first World Superbike point.

The second race of the Australian round will take place tomorrow at 15:00hrs local time, after the traditional 15-minute warm up session that will get underway at 11:25. The new rules concerning the grid for race two will be applied for the first time tomorrow, with Hayden and Bradl starting the encounter from twelfth and fifteenth positions, respectively.

Posted by Philip Chong

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