Yesterday’s first SBK race at Jerez saw the Ducati Superbike Team celebrate a return to the podium with Chaz Davies. The British rider crossed the line in third place in race one, fourth in race two. Two DNFs for Davide Giugliano, who crashed unhurt in the first encounter and was forced to an early retirement in race 2 due to a technical problem.
Chaz Davies: “I’ve been coming here to Jerez for about fifteen years and have never reached the podium; it’s always been a tough track for me and so of course I’m very pleased with today’s result. In race one, the bike was really behaving well in the opening stages and I was able to make some fast laps but then, from about lap eight onwards, it became increasingly difficult to manage the drop in grip. We made a few changes to the rear to try to improve the ‘skatey’ feeling that we had in race 1 but, to be honest, it wasn’t a lot better in race 2. Our pace wasn’t bad but we didn’t have enough in the second half of the race with which to make consistently fast lap times. But, all in all, a third and a fourth, at what I consider to be one of my weakest tracks, is a good result and I’m really happy. I think these results will give us confidence for the final races of the season.”
Davide Giugliano: “It was a really difficult day. In race one we made a good start and I thought I would be able to score a good result. The conditions this weekend have been particularly tough and it hasn’t been easy to understand the limit. We want to win and feel we are getting closer to this result each weekend, I’m giving it 150% and so there is always a risk. I’m obviously disappointed but looking at the positives, we have been consistently there with the fastest guys this weekend and this is fundamental – it can only give us confidence and spur us on to continue to fight. I want to be finishing the races in a strong position and not on the ground obviously. We made a few small changes for race 2 and my feeling improved but unfortunately when I tried to push, to reach those up front, a technical problem caused the rear of the bike to shift unexpectedly and I was forced off track into the gravel. We’re looking at the data to understand exactly what happened…”