Danilo Petrucci: “It’s nice to watch WorldSBK, at least 12 riders can get a podium”

“It’s nice to watch WorldSBK, there are at least 12 different riders who can get on the podium” - Danilo Petrucci.

Danilo Petrucci, Catalunya WorldSBK Race1, 23 March
Danilo Petrucci, Catalunya WorldSBK Race1, 23 March

Despite having to watch Barni Ducati win a WorldSBK race in his absence, Danilo Petrucci was proud of what the team achieved at the recent Assen round.

Petrucci missed the Assen round due to a motocross accident which left him with jaw injuries and a fractured right collarbone.

Petrucci’s replacement Nicholas Spinelli went on to win his first WorldSBK race in mixed conditions, after choosing intermediate tyres over slicks.

Recalling the win for Spinelli, Petrucci said: “I was happy for Spinelli and Barni. Barni was one of the first guys to come to the hospital to see my condition, and he was sad because we were in a good moment.

“We were fighting for the podiums and the top five. Assen is one of my favourite tracks. I think, in the end, we’ve been unlucky with the accident but, on the other hand, lucky.

“Maybe someone up in the air looked down and decided this was our lucky week, for me because I escaped a really bad accident and for Barni, who lost one rider for that race, but he won his first race. I was happy to watch that race.”

Prior to the season getting underway Petrucci claimed the 2024 campaign could be one of the most competitive.

And through three rounds the Italian’s statement is holding true, which is why he believes the championship has never been better to watch.

Petrucci said: “It’s nice to watch WorldSBK. I told everyone at the start of the season that I think there are at least 12 different riders who can get on the podium and a lot of them can win races.

“It’s really challenging to join in because you can be in the top three and, in the next session, in 12th.

“It’s hard but it’s nice to watch for the fans because you never know who’s going to win or stand on the podium.

“From the inside, it’s nice, but hard because we’re all close so it’s really difficult to create a gap.

“Even if you are in tenth place, you can still fight for the podium, because everyone is close on race pace. The new rules have given a bit more competition.”

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