Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri are eager to continue fighting at the front, this time at the second round of the championship in Thailand.

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The Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team ready for Round 2 of the 2017 WorldSBK championship in Thailand

After collecting three podiums in the season opener at Phillip Island (Australia), the Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team is ready to resume action this weekend in Buriram (Thailand) for the second round of the 2017 WorldSBK championship.

In Australia, both Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri showed great competitiveness, fighting constantly for top positions. In particular, Davies missed the win in both races by only thousandths of a second, while Melandri showed resilience by taking third place in Race 2 after he was forced off track in Race 1. The Buriram track is different from Phillip Island, and Davies’ first goal is to improve his best result there – a third place in Race 2 last year – to get closer to the championship lead (from which he’s currently 10 points away), while Melandri is keen to get a good start on Friday, learn a new track quickly and find the right setup ahead of the races.

The Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team will resume action Friday at 09:45 local time (CET +6) for the first free-practice session.

Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #7) 
“We started the year well and I can’t wait to get back on track. In retrospect, I don’t think we’ve ever really been in the ballpark with the setting in Thailand and, knowing what we know, we understand better how to stay within our window. I’m quite excited to try the 2017-spec Panigale R there, as I think the long straights are going to be less of a problem because we made some improvements in terms of power. The track is hard on tyres and racing is going to be tough because of the heat, but there’s a lot to look forward to.”

Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #33)
“I never raced in Thailand, but the track seems quite beautiful and easy to learn. I think that the tarmac will be an important variable to assess, as from TV it looks like the riders were forced to take some peculiar lines. The heat also represents a crucial aspect to take into account. We already did a technical debrief with my crew as the Buriram track seems to require some rather specific setup adjustments. I trust my team completely. It will be important to start off on the right foot on Friday and setup the bike well, not as much for Superpole but for Race 1.”

Circuit information
Country: Thailand
Name: Chang International Circuit
Track length: 4.554 km
Race distance: 20 laps/91.080km
Corners: 12 (5 left, 7 right)

RECORDS
Best lap: Rea (Kawasaki), 1:33.382 (175,563 km/h) – 2015
Circuit record: Rea (Kawasaki), 1:33.817 (174,749 km/h) – 2015
Superpole: Rea (Kawasaki), 1:33.382 (175,563 km/h) – 2015

2016 RESULTS
Race 1: Rea (Kawasaki), Sykes (Kawasaki), vd Mark (Honda)
Race 2: Sykes (Kawasaki), Rea (Kawasaki), Davies (Ducati)

Rider information

Chaz Davies
Bike: Ducati Panigale R
Race number: 7
Age: 30 (Born 10/02/1987 in Knighton, Wales)
SBK races: 129
SBK wins: 20
SBK podiums: 51

Marco Melandri
Bike: Ducati Panigale R
Race number: 33
Age: 34 (Born 07/08/1982 in Ravenna, Italy)
SBK races: 104
SBK wins: 19
SBK podiums: 50

Weekend schedule (CET +6)

Friday
09:45 – 10:45 SBK FP1
14:30 – 15:30 SBK FP2

Saturday
10:45 – 11:10 SBK FP3
13:30 – 13.45 SBK Superpole 1
13:55 – 14:10 SBK Superpole 2
16:00 SBK Race 1

Sunday
11:30 – 11:45 SBK Warm-up
16:00 SBK Race 2