Marco Melandri feels he’s made “a big step forward” aiming to cure his Aruba.it Racing Ducati’s instability at high speeds during the private two-day World Superbike test at Brno after being plagued by the issue at recent rounds.
The World Superbike championship returns to the Czech Republic circuit for the first time in five years, with the Brno round scheduled for June 8-10, with the private test held to allow teams and riders to refamiliarise themselves with the track.
Melandri used the two days at Brno to tackle his problems with stability on his Ducati Panigale R on the straights which has frequently caused him trouble since the Thailand round, while didn’t appear to be a major issue at the 2018 season opener at Phillip Island or during pre-season testing.
The Italian rider ran back-to-back checks on his Panigale R and feels his factory Ducati squad has unearthed the cause of the instability. The issue appears to be rider-specific, with neither Chaz Davies or Michael Ruben Rinaldi suffering from the problem, and Melandri is confident after the test his team has got on top of it.
“It was a really important test. The goal, more even than to prepare the race here, was to improve stability on the straight,” Melandri said. “We took a decisive turn and the situation has improved significantly.
“We ran several back-to-back checks to better understand the nature of the problem, and I think we achieved our goal. Perhaps not 100 percent, but we took a big step forward. Now we head to Imola: I’m confident and sure I’ll be able to fight, with even more determination.”
Melandri and the World Superbike grid returns to action on May 11-13 for Ducati’s home round at Imola.