Andrea Iannone: ‘I’m a little bit stiff, in MotoGP I was fighting a lot’

Andrea Iannone admits he’s not completely happy with his results at the WorldSBK season-opener despite calling it ‘the best comeback possible.

Andrea Iannone, race 2, Australian WorldSBK, 25 February
Andrea Iannone, race 2, Australian WorldSBK, 25 February

Andrea Iannone was one of the standouts from the Phillip Island WorldSBK round, as he claimed a podium in his first race.

Iannone was third behind Nicolo Bulega and Andrea Locatelli in Race 1, before claiming P4 in Race 2.

The Superpole Race was the only blemish on Iannone’s record as he dropped from second to 14th following an issue with his handlebar.

But despite starting out of position for Race 2 and an early red flag throwing the race into another sprint-style race, Iannone bounced back with a brilliant performance.

Arguably the quickest rider during the early stages, Iannone moved up from 14th into the podium spots.

But after changing tyres for the restart, the former MotoGP rider’s pace was not quite as strong although he was still contending for a podium finish with Danilo Petrucci.

Discussing his comeback, Iannone said: “On one hand, I’m angry because I made two mistakes, and I lost the race. In any case, it’s the best comeback possible.

“When I started and rode in first position for many laps, it was incredible. I’m not completely happy.

“It’s my first race after four years and I was first, the feeling and everything was good. I’m a little bit stiff; I’m not at 100% and how I want to be.

“I think, in the past, when I was in MotoGP I was fighting a lot, but it’s a long time. I had a problem with the setting on engine braking.

“I remained with the maximum engine brake, and I wanted to reduce it. It was impossible to switch. I would have signed if you told me I'd finish P3 and P4; it's unbelievable.

“But when you have a feeling that you could do a better result... this weekend was strange, something happened in every moment.”

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