Can Ducati conquer Kawasaki on Sunday?

Saturday, 19 September 2020 17:04 GMT

After finishing with two bikes on the podium, the ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati outfit will be looking to overhaul Kawasaki as race winners on Sunday

Both Scott Redding (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) and teammate Chaz Davies made it onto the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship as Ducati filled two of the three podium places at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya for the inaugural Acerbis Catalunya Round, but missed out on victory as Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) claimed his 97th career victory.

Both Ducati riders had to fight their way through the field in order to secure their place on the podium with Redding getting a superb start from seventh place, and then taking advantage of the near miss between Michael van der Mark (PATA YAMAHA WorldSBK Official Team) and teammate Toprak Razgatlioglu to move up to second place, before being overtaken by Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Team GOELEVEN). Redding would pass Rinaldi on Lap 9 and then finish in second place.

Discussing the race, and where he is looking to improve for tomorrow, Redding said: “In the race, the bike was working quite well compared to practice and qualifying where we struggled a little bit. The problem was I was coming from seventh on the grid. I got quite a good start which was fortunate and then I was there, but I was running at a pace I did not know I could do. There’s not too much we can do. The bike was not bad, and I feel like I was riding well on the bike. I just need to finish well in the Superpole Race so I can be in a position to be on the front row for Race 2 so I can then fight at the front. It’ll be hard tomorrow in the Superpole Race to get a good start to be there in the first couple of laps.”

Davies fought his way back from 11th on the starting grid to claim his fifth podium of the season, with Davies making passes on two of the last three laps after running in the top five, including on Rinaldi and van der Mark. The result moves Davies up to fourth in the standings, level on points with Turkish rider Razgatlioglu.

Davies explained his day, saying: “My pace wasn’t the best for the first half of the race. It seemed like the guys in the podium fight were going away from me and I honestly wasn’t sure if I could have enough pace at the end to get into podium contention. I think we did a good enough job to save some tyre and I came forward at the end. I think we’ve got an idea of where to work. It’s all with a view of improving the bike in the first laps with the fresh tyre, trying to make the best of that grip but also trying not to lose it in the later laps. I think our package is reasonably balanced, but we can always improve it.”

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