Marco Melandri leaves the eighth round of the 2011 World Superbike Championship in a positive mood after once again getting the better of Max Biaggi
to notch up a third win of the season.
In a situation that bore resemblance to their day-long tussle at Motorland Aragon last month, Melandri and Biaggi secured a win apiece in the Czech Republic to reduce the gap to series leader Carlos Checa
by 13 points.
Melandri's win came in the first race after his perseverance behind Biaggi was rewarded by a pass with just three laps remaining, the former MotoGP rider duly holding on to the chequered flag.
He attempted to do the same in race two, Melandri passing for the lead on the penultimate lap, but would have no answer to Biaggi's counter-attack just seconds later.
Nonetheless, despite frustrated to miss out on the double, Melandri is pleased with another strong set of results against some accomplished competition.
"It's a great sensation to be on my third win of the season but I still need to do a double," the Yamaha rider said. "I'm really happy with today's results. At the beginning of race one I didn't think I'd catch up on Max, so I immediately passed Eugene in order to tail him. I was struggling to keep in front, at times Max was faster than me.
“Race two was also very difficult. I certainly didn't give up but it wasn't easy to keep pushing. Max and I had a nice battle which I think we both enjoyed, and I'm sure the spectators did also. I have to say thanks to the team for doing such a good job again. I'm looking forward to Silverstone."
Thrid place Melandri is 23 points behind Biaggi in the standings and 53 points behind Checa.