There is a Ducati running away at the front and another called to follow. The first is the one ridden by Chaz Davies and the second is Marco Melandri’s. The Italian round begins with the fourth best time of the day for Marco Melandri. At the end of the second free practice session, number 33 was almost a half a second from the leader. However, he remains confident because there is plenty of light at the end of the tunnel.
At the moment, Davies has proven to have something more than the rest.
“Chaz is really very fast and competitive. I think that is rather clear. On my part, I can say that I have good confidence, although we still do not have the right setup. Unfortunately, I am struggling too much in braking, especially on Piratella and the Acque Minerali.”
For his teammate, the opposite is true.
“In those sections, Davies is really strong. In any case, we have a different bike than we had at Assen. In fact, we are not that far away from finding the right setup for tomorrow.”
You said you are still struggling too much in braking.
“That’s true. I went long at variante alta since the bike lifted up at the rear and first did not engage. I also smelled smoke at the first variante, maybe because of the hay that ended up near the exhaust, so I preferred running straight on as a precaution. Fortunately, nothing happened.”
What is the encouraging aspect?
“We improved coming out of corners compared with Holland, but I had some difficulty going in. We need the right mix. Chaz created an incredible gap, but I don’t think I am too far from the Kawasakis.”
How much weight does this fourth time carry?
“More than the position, I consider the distance that separates me from the riders ahead and the margin for improvement that we have. I am still rather optimistic.”
Will you be able to catch Davies and Rea?
“It seems like Chaz is uncatchable even for Johnny, so it is better to take one step at a time without being in too much of a rush.”