A birthday doesn't always correspond to a lucky day, and Marco Melandri is proof of this. In fact, the rider from Ravenna blows out 38 candles today, but the two free practice sessions in Portimao today certainly didn't bring a smile to his face, with a 19th place that's hard to swallow.
“This day was not the birthday present I was hoping for. When during practice you have to do a lot of tests," Marco explains, "you risk losing your direction, and that's what happened to me. I changed my position on the bike many times, because I didn't feel comfortable, but things didn't improve.”
Now all that remains is to think about tomorrow, when Melandri and the Barni team will have only one free practice session to recover, before starting to get serious with th Superpole and especially with Race 1.
“We have to take a step back and try to understand what was good today and what was not. We have a lot of margin, since I'm riding poorly at the moment, but we have to be able to improve in just one round, which is certainly not easy.”
Marco Barnabò, the team principal, was also not particularly happy with the day either, but he was aware of the objective difficulties ar the moment.
"The fact that we lack data and tests continues to complicate our lives. We're in difficulty. We even tried many things today, but we haven't chosen the right direction. Nw we have to think," Barnabò concluded, "and be able to find a way out for tomorrow.”