DUCATI MARLBORO MEN ON FRONT-ROW PACE

Ducati Marlboro Team riders Loris Capirossi and Sete Gibernau ended day one of the Italian Grand Prix second and third quickest, putting them in quietly confident mood for the team’s home race.

 

The pair performed brilliantly in both today’s outings run in cool and changeable conditions, the afternoon session getting underway on a partially damp track, Capirossi and Gibernau preferring to wait in the pits until the circuit dried out enough to make practice worthwhile. Once on track, both men continued riding despite on-and-off drizzle because they are anxious to gather as much data as possible for Sunday’s race. Both riders rode their fastest laps in this morning’s fully dry session, Capirossi less than four tenths off ‘provisional pole’, Gibernau just three tenths down on his team-mate.

LORIS CAPIROSSI, 2nd fastest, 1m 51.599s

“Today was another difficult day because of the conditions. When the weather is always changing you can’t work effectively on bike set-up, and this is a tricky racetrack where you need the bike to be perfect from every point of view. But we started well today thanks to the work done here by our test rider Vittoriano Guareschi. He’s done a great job, though today’s conditions were very different from the conditions when he tested tyres here. It’s much cooler now, which doesn’t help. In general, things are going well. I was second quickest in both sessions so we are up front but we have a lot of tyres to test and I hope the weather gets better because I don’t want too many things to test in a short space of time, because I like to work towards the race calmly. The weather forecast for tomorrow is better but you never know, so we must maintain our concentration because Sunday is going to be very tough with a lot of fast riders. I just hope I will be among them…”

 

SETE GIBERNAU, 3rd fastest, 1m 51.907s
“As always, we are feeling very determined. I learned a lot about this bike at the first few races and one of the things we learned is that we need to ride as many laps as possible, so I can give my guys as much information as possible, so I stayed out this afternoon even when some spots of rain started falling. I think we’ve found a good direction with the bike and both the Ducati and my Bridgestone tyres are working pretty well here. This track has always been a difficult place for me, so I need many laps and I’m praying for good weather for the rest of the weekend. We made some good improvements to the bike when we tested after the race at Le Mans. It now turns better and it’s better on corner entry, so the position of the bike, balance-wise, is much better, which means I feel more comfortable and confident into the turns.”

Temperatures: Ambient: 16 degrees. Track: 22 degrees

 

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