FIM STK 1000 Cup graduates Davide Giugliano, Niccolo Canepa and Lorenzo Zanetti all scored points on their full-time WSBK debuts in Sunday's season-opening Phillip Island round.
Reigning STK champion Giugliano, paired with reigning WSBK champion Carlos Checa at Althea Ducati, led the trio home with a ninth place in race one.
Race two then saw Giugliano reach the brink of the top six, behind BMW riders Marco Melandri and Leon Haslam - only for an arm problem to leave him 13th at the flag.
“Race one I used to gain experience, not knowing exactly how it would go. It went quite well and I was able to use what I learned in this race to go on the attack in the second,” he explained. “I started strong in the second race and was up with the front group. I was able to pass those a little slower than me and was, I think, seventh.
“I planned to race behind Melandri and Haslam and conserve the tyres as best I could and that seemed to be working but unfortunately, five laps from the end, I started to suffer pain in my left arm and had to slow down in the final laps.
“It was a pity because if it hadn't been for that, I could have finished in the front group which wouldn't have been at all bad! I have to solve this problem before Imola where I am sure I can do better,” Giugliano added, suggesting he could undergo 'arm-pump' surgery.
While Giugliano faded, former STK champion and MotoGP rider Canepa was able to claim a tenth place finish for the Red Devils Roma Ducati team, helping to make up for a race one mishap.
“In race one I did not start well and then during the rush to recover, I make a mistake on the second lap,” explained Canepa, fifth in STK last season. “I went off and returned in last place, 30 seconds behind the rider ahead of me. The race was ruined, but I wanted to continue to better understand the behaviour of the Ducati's race pace and with worn tyres.
“For race two, we decided to change something that proved correct. I had a good start but then I tried not to push so as not to take risks on the tyres. The strategy proved to be right as in the end I managed to recover certain positions to finish in tenth.