WARNING! WSBK final round race at Imola chat...
That was one hell of a race! One of the best if not the best race I've seen this year between Edward's and Bayliss. Right down to the wire. After the race one, Edward's was leading by just a few points. For the race two, this was the climatic, classic side-by-side race between Edward’s and Bayliss.
1) For Bayliss to win the championship: He had to win the race two, with Edward's placing third.
2) For Edward's to win the championship: He had to finish no lower than second place.
The stage was set. For Bayliss, his tactic was to have Ruben Xous spoil it for Colin Edward's. If Bayliss was leading with Edward's behind him, he would slow down for Rubin Xaou who just happen to be in third place, to catch up to Edward's and pass him, and keep him there in third spot so that Bayliss can run away and recapture the championship. This was the whole game in race two, and it was heated one at that.
At first this tactic looked like it was going in favor of Bayliss, unfortunately, the tactic never worked because although Bayliss was leading the race, Edward's knew what Bayliss and Xaus was trying to do. Edward’s would pass Bayliss who was slowing him down in turns. As soon as Edward's pass Bayliss, Bayliss would come back and pass Edward's again, and they were going back and forth through out the whole race. At one point I thought both Bayliss and Edward's was going to take each other out, and were both breaking lap records, lap after lap.
For Rubin Xaus, that chance never came because both Bayliss and Edward's was just too fast for him to stay with them, and in the end, Edward's would pass Bayliss and take the checkered flag to win the 2002 WSBK championship for the second time. How sweet it is. Edward's was amazing and his Honda RC51.
I'm really happy for Colin Edward's. Although Honda screwed him over with the GP deal giving it to Nicky Hayden, however, Edward's can take the number one plate over to Ducati next year and rub it on Honda's face.