AFTER THE GREAT START WITH A WIN AT PHILLIP ISLAND, THE TOP SPOT IN BOTH WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS AND THE PROGRESS DEMONSTRATED DURING THE JEREZ TESTS, MARCO MELANDRI AND SYLVAIN GUINTOLI SET THEIR SIGHTS ON THE BIG PRIZE.
Noale, 9 April 2014 - After the opening round in Phillip Island, by now more than a month ago, the factory derivative bikes start their engines once again. World Superbike embarks on Europe, specifically on the Spanish Aragon circuit where the hunt for the title will resume for the Aprilia Racing Team.
With one win and two podiums, as well as the top spot in both world championships, the Australian round confirmed just how competitive the team with the Italian 4 cylinder is. Guintoli, winner in Australia, leads the rider championship and Aprilia is at the top of the Manufacturer standings. Aragon is notoriously a track that is well suited to the characteristics of the RSV4 so it is the best possible testing ground to ensure the solidity of the Italian package.
The spotlight is obviously on the provisional championship leader, Sylvain Guintoli. The French rider, a key player last season despite a debilitating injury to his right shoulder, is back to perfect fitness and can count on a feeling with his number 50 RSV4 that has by now reached perfection. In the recent test sessions at Jerez Sylvain was also able to test a few developments with positive results that will provide him with the tools to take a further step forward.
For Marco Melandri Aragon is the perfect opportunity to shake up the Championship. After an opening round with ups and downs at Phillip Island which in any case resulted in an encouraging second place for his rookie race on the Aprilia RSV4, Marco has continued working with his team to fine tune his feeling on the bike in this first year on it, working very hard during the test sessions last week at Jerez. The good pace he demonstrated and the satisfaction expressed by the rider from Ravenna are encouraging, especially on a track like this one where he has always done very well.
Sylvain Guintoli: "I 've had a long time to enjoy the great times from Australia but since Jerez test it's back to work and 100% commitment for Aragon. The new swingarm tested in Jerez has given me better traction and the Aprilia Racing Team has worked very hard to improve our electronic strategies since Oz. I can't wait to be back on track".
Marco Melandri: "Aragon is a fantastic track and I'm sure we will see two very exciting races. We will apply all the improvements we found during the recent tests at Jerez and I will be racing with a strong desire to win. During the long break I worked hard to be at 100% even in terms of fitness. Now I feel like I'm in shape and truly motivated. We are headed to Aragon fully aware that it is the first European round that starts the real Championship every year".