Chaz Davies says his maiden win aboard the new V4 R Ducati in the US World Superbike round is a “huge weight off my shoulders”, having gone 15 months without a victory.
The Ducati rider last won in WSBK at the Aragon round last year, and has endured a tough season aboard the V4 R, scoring just two podiums in the opening nine rounds prior to his US race two breakthrough.
Speaking to WorldSBK.com afterwards, Davies admits he got to a point during his dry spell where he wondered if he could “still do this”.
“Huge weight off my shoulders and also the guys around the garage,” he said. “It's been a long season, let alone when I [last] won which was about 16 months ago in Aragon.
“It's felt like an age, and you get to a point where you're like 'man, can we still do this?' But it's just proof that keep plugging away, keep working hard.
“Felt like a broken record in the first part of the season, just kept repeating myself and people keep asking the same questions, 'what's going on?', and I just didn't really feel like explaining it because I'm working on my own business.
“I know my crew are doing the best they can and I just feel like telling everyone you'll see the result when we get it right, and finally today [Sunday] is that day.”
On Friday at Laguna Seca his Ducati team made a “big change” to the bike, which he says “made the difference”.
“I didn't feel particularly fast on Friday morning,” says Davies, who ended up just 0.006s from pole on Saturday.
“I put an OK lap together, I think it was P6 or something like that, but it was more the feeling.
“The feeling wasn't there on Friday morning and it was kind of like Donington, kind of like Misano.
“I was just bracing for a long weekend and said we have two options: we can just stay in this window and play around, maybe scratch out a podium at best, or we can try and do something about it and we really made the right move.
“The crew did an excellent job, I'm really, really happy with that and it made the difference to be able to win that.”