For the Aruba.it Racing - Ducati team, the Riviera di Rimini Round of the Superbike World Championship proved to be more complicated than expected, with both riders – Álvaro Bautista and Chaz Davies – for various reasons unable to bring home satisfactory results in the home race for the Aruba team and for Ducati.
Due to a crash at Turn 4 on lap 2 of the second race while he was in the lead, the championship leader Bautista saw his advantage in the table reduced to just 16 points over his closest rival Rea (Kawasaki). Bautista did manage to get back on the bike and finish the race in 14th place, picking up just two points. This morning, he dominated the Superpole Race over ten laps, taking the chequered flag ahead of Lowes (Yamaha) and Haslam (Kawasaki).
Unfortunately, it was another difficult weekend for his team-mate Chaz Davies, who struggled in both races today. In the Superpole Race, following a crash at Turn 14 on lap 3, he finished in 17th place after rejoining the race. After making some modifications to the set-up for Race 2, Chaz struggled with a lack of grip and was unable to go any higher than seventh place.
Bautista still leads the table with 330 points, 16 more than Rea, while Davies is in eighth place with 114 points. The next race in the championship – the UK Round – will take place in two weeks’ time at the Donington Park circuit, from 5th to 7th July.
Álvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #19) – 1st / 14th
“I’m happy but at the same time very angry with myself about the results of today’s two races. It went well in the morning’s Superpole Race because we were on really top form. After a good start I immediately took the lead, and set the pace right down to the chequered flag. In Race 2 it was very hot and the track didn’t have as much grip. On lap 2, I didn’t do anything strange at Turn 4, but just lost the front and crashed. Pity because our potential was obviously to fight for the win. Maybe the error came about because I was too confident after the win in the Superpole Race, but in any case we must have a good look at the data because I’ve made two similar mistakes in the last two races, and that’s not good. We have to understand why so as not to repeat the same mistakes and lose more points.”
Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #7) – 17th / 7th
“It has been a difficult Sunday for me. I lost the front in the Superpole Race in Turn 14, and as a result didn’t get the chance to start in the top 9 for Race 2. Then we made some changes for Race 2, but they didn’t give us the step we needed. It was a critical racetrack today because grip was low, but it was the same for everyone. I just felt like I’ve got no adaptability with the bike, even though I tried to change my style during the race. It’s a bit frustrating to finish races like that, because I know we can do better than that. We just need to learn from the information and work hard in the areas that are letting us down at the moment.”