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Melandri to make Aprilia debut in test?

Marco Melandri could be out on the Aprilia RSV4 when post-season World Superbike testing gets underway at Jerez on Tuesday.
Speculation that Marco Melandri will join Aprilia Racing for the 2014 World Superbike Championship could take another step towards being confirmed after it was rumoured he may ride the RSV4 in post-season testing this week.

The Italian has been linked to the manufacturer ever since current employers BMW announced it would be exiting the season following the final round of 2013 at Jerez, while it is common knowledge that Eugene Laverty has been dropped to make way for another rider.

Having concluded his 2013 season with fourth in the standings, with one final podium finish at Jerez, Speedweek.de is reporting that Melandri may well get a taste of his new bike tomorrow [Tuesday] in traditional post-season testing.

However, much will depend on the state of his injured ankle, which may be more serious that originally feared. Sustained prior to the final round after 'falling up the stairs', Melandri battled to second place in the first race at Jerez following an engaging tussle with Laverty, but opted to skip the second race altogether.

As it stands, just three riders have confirmed WSBK rides for next season – Tom Sykes on the Kawasaki, plus Jonathan Rea and Leon Haslam on the Pata Honda -, but should Melandri join Aprilia he is expected to be joined by Sylvain Guintoli.




Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Melandri, German WSBK 2013
Honda Musashi Harc Pro - Takahashi, Haslam and Van Der Mark - win 2014 Suzuka 8 Hours (Pic: David Reygondeau).
Van der Mark, Haslam, Takahashi, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Rea, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Rea, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Rea, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Rea, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Rea, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Lorenzo, Rea, Akiyoshi, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Haslam, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Haslam, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Haslam, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Rea, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Rea, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Rea, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Rea, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
Rea, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014
REa, Suzuki 8 hours, July 2014

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BooBoo123

October 21, 2013 1:41 PM

Apparently Guintoli had a clause in his contract that stipulated if he was top three in the championship by a certain point in the season he had an automatic renewal. To be fair, disparity in wins aside, Guintoli and Laverty were pretty evenly-matched this season, and it's easy to forget that Laverty only won 1 race last season in his first year with Aprilia. Given Guintoli won 3 on inferior Ducati machinery, you can only really compare them after next season.



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