Regis Laconi has thanked DFX Corse for giving him the chance to revive his World Superbike career after producing his best result in more than two years on his debut for the team in Australia.
After several barren seasons competing with Kawasaki, Laconi made to switch to DFX over the winter to be reunited with the Ducati manufacturer he scored 11 wins and almost won the title with back in 2004.
With the team also keen to improve their fortunes after a difficult year in 2008, Laconi hinted at his potential throughout free practice and pre-qualification to be a consistent top ten performer, before causing a stir by smashing the lap record during the second phase of Superpole.
Although he would eventually only qualify in eighth position, Laconi made impressive headway in the first race to briefly run as high as second, even if tyre woes would eventually consign him to seventh at the chequered flag.
Minor changes to the bike for the second race gave Laconi hope of an even better result, which he was on course to do when he latched onto the battle for third position. Working his way past Max Biaggi and Michel Fabrizio on the final lap of the race, Laconi launched a late attack on Leon Haslam for a podium but would be edged by just two tenths of a second.
Although he admits he was disappointed to just miss out on the chance to stand on the rostrum, Laconi was nonetheless delighted to record his best result since Brands Hatch 2006.
"We went for the combination of a hard tyre at the rear and a medium one at the front to provide consistency throughout the race. In the first race it became difficult on the straights, but for the second we made a small change and found an ideal set-up which allowed me to maintain a very fast pace.
“I only just missed out on the podium, which I'm half pleased about. Getting so close and then not managing it always leaves you with a slightly bitter taste in the mouth, but nonetheless I'm extremely happy with the results we gained over the three days.”
Also DFX's best result since Michel Fabrizio finished third at Brno in 2007, Laconi went on to thank team manager Daniele Carli for having faith in him when other teams had dismissed him.
“I went through a tough period in my career but, whilst I never believed it was over, I found only in Daniele Carli someone who still believed in me.
“To be able to repay him like this is brilliant, and to be able to ride a bike like that is truly a great privilege. Thank you to the team, to the team manager and to all the sponsors; today I am truly a happy man."