FABRIZIO (DUCATI XEROX) BATTLES AGAINST THE BRITS TO TAKE FOURTH IN RACE 1 AT SILVERSTONE Silverstone (UK), Sunday 1st August : a very difficult day for the Ducati Xerox team and its riders Michel Fabrizio and Noriyuki Haga at Silverstone...
FABRIZIO (DUCATI XEROX) BATTLES AGAINST THE BRITS TO TAKE FOURTH IN RACE 1 AT SILVERSTONE
Silverstone (UK), Sunday 1st August : a very difficult day for the Ducati Xerox team and its riders Michel Fabrizio and Noriyuki Haga at Silverstone today; after two extremely hard-fought races, in which the British contingent of riders dominated proceedings, the best result for the Italian factory team was a fourth place finish achieved by Michel in Race 1.
In that first race Michel started well from third on the grid, holding on to that position for the first seven laps, behind Jonathan Rea and Cal Crutchlow. Passed by Leon Haslam during the eighth lap, Fabrizio began to lose ground in the final stages due to a lack of rear traction, but was nevertheless able to hold fourth all the way to the finish line, to take some solid championship points. Noriyuki, starting from the fourth row, had problems from the start; the rear of his 1198 was sliding around to such an extent that it was difficult to open the throttle out of the corners. He was lapping in eleventh position for the best part of the race but the level of feeling worsened in the last laps, and the Japanese rider unfortunately lost three positions, eventually closing the race in fourteenth place.
Both riders made small changes to the set-up of their 1198 machines before the second race in order to improve rear tyre wear but unfortunately these modifications did not work to their advantage. Michel's rear tyre moved around so much that he had to make an unexpected pit-stop on the eleventh lap. Having changed the rear tyre, he immediately returned to the track but, having lost a lot of ground and lamenting continued lack of grip, he returned definitively to the garage on lap fourteen, thus putting an early end to his race. Noriyuki benefited to a slight extent from the changes made but feeling was not great and he was unable to do better than thirteenth position.
Michel Fabrizio (Race 1 -- 4th, Race 2 - DNF)
"Well as we expected, the British riders really had the bit between their teeth today and it was all I could so to stick with them. I didn't expect Haslam to get past when he did but once he did, there wasn't much I could do about it, but nevertheless I'm pretty satisfied with fourth to tell the truth. In race 2 my rear tyre was moving around a lot and having lost a lot of ground I came in to try to change it but once I went back on track I realized that nothing had changed and, out of the points zone, I retired from the race."
Noriyuki Haga (Race 1 -- 14th, Race 2 -- 13th)
"In Race 1 it was really difficult as the rear was moving around all over the place and so I couldn't open the throttle when I needed to or make up positions as I'd hoped to. We made some changes for the second race but they didn't improve my overall feeling with the bike. It seemed like I needed more traction and I could only push so much. It was a very difficult weekend."