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Eugene Laverty ready to race after dramatic Imola crash

Northern Ireland's Eugene Laverty suffered a dramatic crash at Imola that saw the first race cut short in round five of the Superbike World Championship.

He lost control at high speed on a straight after his Milwaukee Aprilia bike had been jostling for position with Yamaha rider Alex Lowes on the 13th of 19 scheduled laps.

As Laverty was sent skidding across the road surface, his bike careered ahead of him into barriers and burst into flames.

The 30-year-old was able to walk away, and later in a statement from his team said: "I'm okay after the crash and I thought it would hurt me more, but my gear did its job and I'm ready to get on the bike again tomorrow."

The red flag swiftly went up and the race was halted, with Ducati's Welsh rider Chaz Davies taking the win ahead of Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki) and Marco Melandri (Ducati).

The second race of the weekend takes place on Sunday.

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