Marco Melandri has moved back up to second position in the World Superbike Championship standings, despite falling one corner short of victory on home soil at Monza.
The Italian put in an impressive display in his first performance at Monza since 1996, running with the leaders in race one before settling for fourth, while he found himself in the right place during race two when runaway leader Max Biaggi was handed a ride-through penalty.
Leading for almost the duration of the race's second-half, Melandri looked on course for victory, only to suffer with gear problems into the final corner and subsequently run wide.
Handing victory to the close following Eugene Laverty, Melandri was naturally disappointed with the end result, though he takes consolation in the fact he has closed Carlos Checa's advantage to 27 points.
“It's been a tough but still quite a good weekend. I had difficulty finding the right set-up in order to provide more stability. We made progress before the second race but the bike was still quite agitated towards the end.
“In the last corner I struggled with the gears and the rear tyre locked causing me to go slightly wide. I'm really pleased to be on the podium and I really enjoyed riding the track. We have gained some important points but I'd like to get more next time!”