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‘Double zero’ stalls Melandri momentum
10 September 2012
Marco Melandri is confident he can recover his momentum next time out in Portugal after seeing his shortlived World Superbike Championship lead wiped out with an unprecedented double DNF at the Nurburgring.
Determined to put on a good performance for BMW on home soil, Melandri appeared uncomfortable from the start of race one, but was holding down a solid third place when he tucked the front under braking for the Dunlop hairpin.
Though Max Biaggi's subsequent win hauled him back ahead in the overall standings by 6.5 points, Melandri looked on course to overturn that deficit again in race two when it was the Aprilia rider's turn to take a tumble.
However, while Melandri would work himself up to the front of the field, another front-end crash at turn eleven would consign him to his second retirement of the day and his fourth of the season.
While Biaggi's recovery to only 13th means the championship remains finely poised with just 9.5 points between the Italians with two rounds and four races remaining, Melandri admits the accidents have left him perplexed.
“This was my first time getting a double zero. It was two different races, but with the same result. I am very disappointed for the team that is working so hard. In race one I struggled a lot with the rear grip and was losing a lot compared to the guys in front of me so I was trying to catch them in braking.
“I was braking very hard every time but in corner eight I took a bump and just lost the front. I don't know what caused my crash in race two yet. I was on the straight and lost the front. That was strange. Now I will recharge my batteries and fight back in Portugal.”
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