Yamaha's Marco Melandri won his second World Superbike race of the season today, the Italian pressuring countryman Max Biaggi throughout the race and taking victory at Motorland Aragon in Spain when Biaggi finally faltered.The two fought for the win throughout the race until Biaggi went too deep into a corner and Melandri slipped up the inside to take over the point. It was Biaggi's second mistake in as many races as an error last week in Misano allowed Carlos Checa to pass late in the second race.Melandri took full advantage of the miscue and went on to win by 1.2 seconds. For Biaggi it was his eighth second-place finish of the season in his title defense year.

One thing worked in favor of both riders and that was the non-finish by runaway championship leader Carlos Checa. The Spaniard crashed his Althea Ducati just as he started to chew away at the gap to the two leaders, allowing his two rivals to gain significant ground back in the championship chase. Still, Checa leads Biaggi by 52 points, 245-193, with Melandri a further 18 points adrift of the championship leader.With Checa out of the race, Aprilia's Leon Camier inherited third place. The Brit charged hard at the end of the race and closed to just a second behind Biaggi at the finish. It was Camier's third podium finish of the year.Fourth place went to Eugene Laverty after the Yamaha man came out on top of a battle with Aprilia-mounted Noriyuki Haga and the Kawasaki of Tom Sykes. At the finish it was Sykes in fifth with Haga sixth. The second Kawasaki, ridden by Joan Lascorz, was seventh with Ayrton Badovini riding his privateer BMW to eighth.Leon Haslam won a battle for ninth with his factory BMW teammate Troy Corser, with the Aussie rounding out the top 10 finishers.Alstare Suzuki's Michel Fabrizio and Team Effenbert-Liberty Racing Ducati's Jakub Smrz both suffered crashes in the race.

Race One

1.                  Marco Melandri (Yamaha)

2.                  Max Biaggi (Aprilia)

3.                  Leon Camier (Aprilia)

4.                  Eugene Laverty (Yamaha)

5.                  Tom Sykes (Kawasaki)

6.                  Noriyuki Haga (Aprilia)

7.                  Joan Lascorz (Kawasaki)

8.                  Ayrton Badovini (BMW)

9.                  Leon Haslam (BMW)

10.                  Troy Corser (BMW)
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World Superbike Headlines

By Cycle News Staff

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