Calvenzano (BG), 16th July 2020. Marco Melandri and the Barni Racing Team together for the Superbike’s restart. The team from Bergamo and the 37-year-old rider from Ravenna reached an agreement and signed until the end of the 2020 WorldSBK season.
Professional respect between the team manager Marco Barnabò and Melandri has been consolidated for years and now their path crossed. “Barni” chose “Macho” for the restart, Marco chose the Ducati Panigale V4 R by “Barni” for an exiting comeback.
If in the past events had always made impossible to race together, this unusual season led to an agreement: Leon Camier physical condition forced Barni Racing Team to look around, Melandri – who has always recognized the professionality and value of the team – met the challenge deciding to get back into the game.
There is no time for an official presentation, today Marco visited the Barni Racing Team factory in Calvenzano (BG) to “take measures” at the Ducati Panigale V4 R, tomorrow he will be already on track at the Cremona circuit for a closed-door test session. Right after, over the weekend of 31 July – 2 August, WorldSBK is set to take place in Jerez de la Frontera (Spain) with Marco Melandri in the colour of Barni Racing Team.
“The situation was quite surreal, in normal conditions I never thought I’d come back, then it seemed like fate chose for me. This long and quiet period has regenerated me and made me slip away all the negative things I was focusing on before. Going back to the track once it was enough to rediscover all positive feelings that only a bike can give me. Then one by one almost incredible situations lined up: not having had the chance to ride the Ducati Panigale V4 R was a regret and now the opportunity is there, on the Barni Racing Team’s bike there are Showa suspensions and since MotoGP period I always have felt great with those products. It’s going to be a championship with only six races, all in Europe on tracks that I like, so it’s going to be a limited and time-focused effort. If there was anyone who could convince me to come back it was Marco Barnabò. I think the Barni Racing Team is the right team for me, a ‘small family’ where there is a desire to grow but also to have fun working with passion. I’m aware that I will have a winning bike and the best components, would also like to thank Claudio Domenicali, Gigi Dall’Igna e Paolo Ciabatti, and the whole Ducati team for this opportunity.”
Marco Barnabo, Team Principal:
“After all that happened we needed an experienced rider who already knew the tracks, the tyres and the Championship. Marco showed great enthusiasm and a great desire to get back in the game, this approach persuaded us that he’s the right choice. His value is not debated and, tests aside, he only did one race less than the others. It is as if he never stopped. We believe that in a strange championship like that, He can be an added value and Ducati also supported us in this choice.”