Althea Ducati: Superbike Rules Defective

WSBK Report

Monza played host to the first Italian motorcycle races of the 2010 World Superbike Championship. The Althea Racing team’s overall performance was positive, and, thanks to the hard work of riders Shane Byrne and Carlos Checa, the team remains in fourth position in the team standings.

The Ducati 1098R team is just behind Team Suzuki Alstare, Aprilia (RSV4) Alitalia Racing and the Yamaha Sterilgarda Team; Althea Racing is the first Ducati team in the classification.

After a thirteenth place finish in Race 1 this morning, English rider Shane Byrne managed to finish within the top ten in the afternoon’s second race, closing in ninth, having made good progress from fifteenth position on the grid.

Shane Byrne says: "We knew it would be difficult but in the end, thanks to my team’s hard work in the garage, we took a good result and I had fun, especially in Race 2", said "Shakey". "On Friday we were a long way off but today we were not so far behind the competition. I’m sorry for Genesio and for the team because I know they would have liked to do better at their "home" track but I did my best and gave 110%. I know we can do better at Kyalami."

Carlos Checa, on the other hand, finished outside of the top ten, concluding the two races in fourteenth and eleventh position. Thanks to the points obtained today, the Spanish rider now has the same points total as Rea (110).

Carlos Checa says: "It was a difficult weekend and probably, if we consider the gap between us and the four cylinders, it’s true to say that I wasn’t very motivated here. The fact that we haven’t managed to find the right balance with the bike has definitely impacted on the results. Fortunately we now go to Kyalami, a track that suits our bike. The engine power doesn’t count as much and we’ll strive to get back on form."

Genesio Bevilacqua (General Manager) says: "It’s evident that at Monza there is a significant difference between the performance of the two and the four cylinders. This regulation means that there is a risk of "falsifying" a show that, thanks to the performances of such talented riders, could be even more spectacular and enthralling."

"There is a defect in the regulation and something should change, because we have no chance to fight, on a level playing field, with the other bikes. We enjoy to battle it out on track but we must also speak to the FIM and the championship organizers, who need to find a solution. We have two of the strongest Superbike riders but with our Ducatis we have had a disappointing day. This is wrong…"

WSBK RACE 1: M. BIAGGI (Aprilia) in 31’07"044; 2) J. TOSELAND (Yamaha) a 0"247; 3) C. CRUTCHLOW (Yamaha) a
0"297… 13) S. BYRNE (Ducati Althea Racing) a 22"602; 14) C. CHECA (Ducati Althea Racing) a 22"742…

WSBK RACE 2: M. BIAGGI (Aprilia) in 31’07"122; 2) L. HASLAM (Suzuki) a 4"547; 3) T. CORSER (BMW) a 5"469… 9) S. BYRNE (Ducati Althea Racing) a 21"920… 11) C. CHECA (Ducati Althea Racing) a 27"152…

The next World Superbike event is fixed for 16th May, when the Althea Racing Team will be on track at Kyalami (South Africa) for the sixth round of the 2010 season.