Argentinan not present at Qatar following teams decision
Leandro `Tati' Mercado’s season has come to an end one round early in the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship in 2017, after the IODARacing Team have decided to not attend the Acerbis Qatar Round.
The Argentinean rider has commented on the absence at the Losail International Circuit through his social networks and despite regretting it, he has noted the positive parts of his campaign with the Aprilia RSV4 RF.
"This season was very short, it started late (I missed the first two Rounds because of an injury) and it ended too early. I regret not being present at the last race in Qatar because of the team's decision to finish ahead of time, in the absence of a race. Despite this situation, I am calm because I know that I always gave everything I had, trying to adapt as quickly as possible to a completely new bike for me. With the team we have tried to make the most of each batch of tests in order to always improve. "
"The level of official WorldSBK bikes is very high, so getting good results with a private motorbike helped motivate me even more. You learn a lot when you are obliged to always give 110% to be close to the group ahead, it was certainly exhausting, but also very fun, "continues the 25-year-old pilot, who acknowledges, however, that he has been one step behind. the initial objectives:
"The objective of this season was to finish in the top ten and be the first Aprilia at the end of the Championship. We got close enough, today I'm 11th in the middle of the two official Aprilia, but with two races less. I would not have achieved it without the experience of my team, who showed the same passion as me and who believed in me until the end. "
"I thank the IodaRacing for giving me this opportunity, my sponsors and all those who have been close to me supporting me, now let's look forward thinking in 2018!" Concludes Mercado, whose future in the top category of WorlSBK has not yet been concreted to today's date.
Follow the WorldSBK action for 2017 as the season is set to come to a close. The Acerbis Qatar Round starts this Thursday with FP1 at 17:45LT. The first race of the weekend will be at 9:00 pm on Friday, November 3. All live with the WorldSBK VideoPass.