WSBK Misano: Melandri fast but focused on races

Aprilia's Marco Melandri turns his attentions to ensuring he has good race pace at Misano after finishing the first day of WSBK practice inside the top three.
Marco Melandri says he is focused on ensuring he has a good race package beneath him at Misano, claiming he would 'rather be slower but more consistent' at this stage in the weekend.

Fresh from his double victory last time out at Sepang, successes that have given his flagging WSBK title hopes a significant boost, Melandri was on fine form again in FP1 at Misano, opening up quickest ahead of Aprilia team-mate Sylvain Guintoli.

Fast again in the faster FP2 session, though late flyers from Davide Giugliano and Tom Sykes would demote him at the chequered flag, he was still third best.

Having proven to himself that he can set a quick single lap, Melandri is now focusing on race pace in an effort to repeat his Malaysian performance.

“I feel good. I was fast right from the start. We started off with the solutions that worked for us at Sepang and then we gradually improved on them. We'll be working especially on the first sector but I'm not worried. During the race it will be very easy to make mistakes so I prefer being a bit slower but more consistent.

“Tomorrow I expect the track to be much faster. We'll keep working on race pace but also with an eye toward the flying lap. The characteristics of the circuit make overtaking difficult so starting as far toward the front as possible will be essential.”

Similarly, Guintoli slipped to seventh in FP2 as he set his sights on consistency, but the Frenchman – who along with Melandri is riding in one-off colours to celebrate Aprilia's first WC win back in 1987 this weekend – is satisfied he has a quick bike beneath him.

“Today was business as usual - a lot of work on race pace,” he said. “We lapped a lot on used tyres so I think tomorrow we will be able to increase our speed quite a bit. The base set up we found today is good but we still need to try out a few more settings. Besides that the new colours of my RSV4 are gorgeous. It doesn't help us shave any time off but it's always nice to ride a good looking bike!.”

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