The Superbike lands in Imola, and everyone is waiting for the Italian riders. One of these is undoubtedly Axel Bassani: the best independent among those on the grid, called to confirm his encouraging performances from the beginning of the season.
On the eve of the Santerno stage, the Motocorsa rider takes stock of the situation.
“I've struggled here in the past,” he recalled. “But Imola is a fantastic track, and I want to be confident ahead of the weekend, aiming for the top five as a goal to achieve. Now the level of this SBK has risen, and so many riders are close.”
How much will the 250-rpm cut be an influence?
“It’s a shame, because it’s crippling, especially for us private riders. In fact, you have to work with another ratio, since you can’t take advantage of traditional engine revolutions. Basically, you ride with the wrong ratio, which is not your bike’s.”
Axel then goes into detail.
“Now, a corner you did in second, you might have to do in first. You need different set-ups working on the electronics.”
In qualifying, however, will you need to do better than in Donington?
“Here we have the tire that allows us to do more than one lap, and this aspect could help.”
We recently interviewed Tardozzi. Davide said you don’t have to feel like the victim of the SBK situation just because you don’t have a factory bike.
“I never complained about my bike. The thing is, I’d feel ready to make the jump. I say this because I don’t want to settle, and I aim high. Nevertheless, my team is fantastic. They give it their all, and I can’t say anything about it.”
It seems like Bulega could be going to the factory team next year.
“I read that. I don’t think Michael is having a good time, and I understand that, since there’s a lot of pressure on him. Bulega is winning and has all the cards. If he does, he deserves it.”
Is that hard on you?
“We have to try to do our best and try to prove that we’re worth it for that bike there. Obviously, I’m not stressing, because I’m going to try to work and sweat. Of course, I feel bad, because it would’ve been nice, but I’ll continue to do my job.”
What does Bassani want for his future?
“I’m a rider that looks at the project. In fact, I appreciate those who are looking for new challenges like Toprak. It’s easy to choose the top. Instead, he looked at the project and the motivation that can give him a challenge, like winning with BMW.”