Monza: Ducati preview

SLIPSTREAM THRILLER GUARANTEED AS DUCATI XEROX TEAM HEADS TO MONZA FOR WORLD SUPERBIKE ROUND 4 Monza (Italy), Thursday 5 May: World Superbikes head to the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza circuit this coming weekend for the fourth round of this...

SLIPSTREAM THRILLER GUARANTEED AS DUCATI XEROX TEAM HEADS TO MONZA FOR WORLD SUPERBIKE ROUND 4

Monza (Italy), Thursday 5 May: World Superbikes head to the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza circuit this coming weekend for the fourth round of this year's championship battle. A slipstream thriller is guaranteed around the legendary Formula 1 circuit as a multitude of powerful four-stroke Superbikes hit top speeds of close to 200 mph (320 km/h) down the long Monza straights.

Top speed is something the Ducati Xerox Team riders James Toseland and Regis Laconi are not lacking as they get to grips with this early part of the season, both riders having set outright speed records for the championship (316 km/h for Toseland, then 318 km/h for Laconi) at the Phillip Island circuit one month ago.

Regis Laconi was knocked cold in an incident with another rider during Sunday warm-up at Valencia, an incident that caused him to miss both races, but the Frenchman has now fully recovered and has set his sights on breaking the Suzuki stranglehold on the championship.

"Last week was very tough for me as I was still feeling the effects of the crash and was very tired, but I went for a check at the start of this week and I am now 100% fit for Monza" declared Laconi. "I've even managed to do some training on the bicycle so now I am looking forward to getting back on my Ducati on Friday.

"I really love the Monza track" he continued, "it's very fast and it involves a lot of hard riding. I had a double win last year, and the Ducati always seems to go well there. The 999 is a very fast bike so we're OK for top speed, now all we need to do in qualifying is find a good solution for rear grip for the fast curves, of which there are a lot at Monza, especially as you exit the Parabolica, but we were going well at Valencia until Sunday morning and I'm sure we will be in a good position for this weekend's race."

James Toseland has had a difficult time since the start of the season on the #1 championship-winning Ducati 999 machine, but is convinced that at Monza everything will be in place to help him re-emerge as a front-runner.

"At Monza we've just got to get things sorted out. We're not a million miles away, the circumstances that have happened in qualifying have been bad but I'm not making any excuses" declared Toseland. "Monza is not very technical as a circuit - it's just long straights and braking at the limit. We've got a few things to try there, so with a track that's not very complicated, with the speed of the Ducati and everything else, hopefully it will be a weekend in which we have two solid results to get everything back on track.

"My confidence and the team morale have suffered a few knocks recently but I can assure you that there's nothing wrong with us or the bike and we want to find the form again. I've got a good team behind me and we're going to work hard this weekend to be back up front", concluded James.

-www.ducati.com

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About this article
Series World Superbike
Drivers James Toseland , Laconi Régis , Phillip Island