Motul Dutch Round 20 - 22 Apr
Davies 5th and Melandri 7th in Race 2 at Assen with the Aruba.it Racing - Ducati team
ducati.com Photos Martina&Mario
After taking a podium in Race 1 with Chaz Davies (3rd), the Aruba.it Racing - Ducati team resumed competition today at Assen (Netherlands), home of the fourth round of the 2018 WorldSBK
Championship, scoring a fifth and seventh place with Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri respectively in Race 2.
Both riders faced a difficult task after briefly going off the track in the early-laps pandemonium. Davies then recovered positions to climb up to fifth half-way through the race, but couldn't make further moves due to unexpected vibrations on the rear. Melandri fought hard as well, and rode within a group of five riders fighting for sixth position to finish in seventh.
Michael Ruben Rinaldi, with the Aruba.it Racing - Junior Team, also faced a uphill race but still managed to score points and gain valuable experience, taking 12th position under the checkered flag. After four rounds, Davies (129 points) and Melandri (115 points) are respectively second and third in the championship, while Rinaldi (21 points) is 15th. The Aruba.it Racing - Ducati team and the Aruba.it Racing - Junior Team will resume action at Imola (Italy) for the fifth round of the WorldSBK Championship, scheduled for May 11-13. To better prepare for the home round, the teams will hold a private test at Brno (Czech Republic) next week, on April 25th and 26th.
Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #7) – 5th
"Looking at the positives, we didn't give away too many points; but today the race was a bit of a struggle. We changed the bike and in the early stages we suffered with edge grip and turning on the exit, then we had a strange vibration on the rear. We still need to find out what caused it, but it forced us to go slower in the final laps and basically just bring it home. We struggled a bit here but we have a good base and we just need to react more quickly. Imola has been good in the past few years so I hope for better fortunes there."
Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #33) – 7th
"I gave everything I had out there, fighting as if the win was on the line, but unfortunately we rode another difficult race and we fought once again against the same issue that has been penalizing us lately. Our potential is much higher, but I look ahead with positivity because both the team and Ducati are working really hard to improve. Next week's test will be very important. I think the solution is within reach, and I hope to be able to fight for podiums and wins as soon as possible."
Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing - Junior Team #21) – 12th
"I thought we could do better. We worked hard for the second half of the race, but unfortunately at the start I found an issue, which hindered my performance. It's a pity, because our potential is getting bigger, but this is racing. I look forward to Imola, a track that I really like, to keep improving."
Stefano Cecconi, Aruba CEO and Team Principal
"After scoring wins on each track we raced at so far this season, unfortunately we didn't achieve the expected results at Assen. So, we'll work even harder to prepare for our home race at Imola, where we want to be protagonists and put on a show with our riders for all the ducatisti."