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Oct 1, 2013

Team SBK Ducati Alstare: Pirro To Fill In For Injured Checa At Magny-Cours

FIM Superbike World Championship: Michele Pirro (51) in action on a Pramac Racing Ducati MotoGP bike at Misano.
Badovini and Pirro head to Magny-Cours with Team SBK Ducati Alstare for penultimate SBK round

Magny-Cours (France), Tuesday 1 October 2013: with the Laguna Seca round having come to a close just two days ago, Team SBK Ducati Alstare is already heading back to Europe, to the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours in France where the penultimate round of the 2013 World Superbike Championship is taking place this weekend.

In last weekend’s Laguna races, riders Ayrton Badovini and Niccolò Canepa took a mixed bag of results. After a positive performance in all of the practice and qualifying sessions, Niccolò unfortunately crashed out of race 1, closing race 2 fifteenth. Ayrton, riding the physical Laguna track with a very painful left ankle, finished race one in ninth position, victim of a crash in race two. Canepa, who stepped in to substitute injured Carlos Checa, cannot do the same in Magny-Cours as he is fighting for the title in the Superstock 1000 category, the penultimate race of which will take place at Magny-Cours over the same weekend. Badovini will therefore be joined at the French track by Ducati MotoGP test rider Michele Pirro.

Badovini’s best Superbike result at the French track to date was a sixth place finish last season. He would like to finish the season in a positive way, earning as many points as possible for the championship standings. Michele Pirro has never raced in the Superbike category, though knows Magny-Cours from his time in Supersport in 2009 and 2010. In testing carried out at Mugello last week, Michele had the chance to ride the 1199 Panigale for the first time, an initial approach ahead of the upcoming French race weekend.

Ayrton Badovini:
“Magny-Cours is a track that I really enjoy and is also a lot less physical compared to Laguna for example. It’s a right-hand track, which will be less of a strain in terms of my ankle, and with a few more days in which to recuperate I reckon I’ll be 90% fit come race day. The fact that we go to France directly from Laguna, rather than after a two-week break, will be another advantage.”

Badovini’s Superbike form at Magny-Cours:
2012: Race 1 – 6th, Race 2 – 9th
2011: Race 1 – DNF, Race 2 – 8th
2008: Race 1- 16th, Race 2 – 17th

Michele Pirro:
“I made a few laps at Mugello last Thursday during our last test. It was my first time riding a Superbike and I’m pleased because I got on well, although it’s difficult to evaluate because when you’re on track alone it’s all a lot easier. Anyway, I’m confident and convinced that we can take a good result. It will all be new for me, the bike, brakes, tyres but I believe that with determination and the help of such a professional team we’ll be able to work well and I hope to find a good feeling. The important thing is to always give it everything. This is an important year for me, in which I’ve made my debut in MotoGP and now in Superbike too. I can’t wait to get on track and thank Ducati and team Ducati Alstare for this opportunity.”

CIRCUIT DATA

Country: France
Name: Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours
Length of circuit: 4.411 km
Pole Position: right
Race distance: 23 laps/101.453 km

LAP RECORDS: Best lap – Haga (Ducati) 1'38.619 (2009). Superpole – Sykes (Kawasaki) 1'36.950 (2012).

2012 RESULTS: Race 1 - 1. Guintoli (Ducati); 2. Melandri (BMW); 3. Sykes (Kawasaki). Race 2 – 1. Sykes (Kawasaki); 2. Rea (Honda); 3. Guintoli (Ducati)