Team Suzuki Press Office – June 24. FIXI Crescent Suzuki makes its second visit to Italy in this season’s eni FIM Superbike World Championship as the series heads to Imola and one of the most iconic circuits anywhere in the world.
Leon Camier and Jules Cluzel are both travelling to Italy in positive moods after strong performances last time out at Portimao in Portugal. Camier was buoyed by his fourth place in race one – a result that could have been even better if he hadn’t been knocked off the track in the first lap – and Cluzel is eager to take the next step in his Superbike apprenticeship and start to push towards the faster front group.
The town of Imola is located in the Emilia-Romagna region of north-central Italy, approximately 40kms from Bologna. It is also only 80kms from the Ferrari factory at Marenello from where the circuit gets the title of ‘Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari’ as it was named after Ferrari’s founder Enzo and his son Dino. The 4,936m circuit surrounds the Acque Minerali public park, a name also associated with one of the many famous parts of the track, which also includes Variante Alta, Rivazza and Tamburello.
FIXI Crescent Suzuki’s two riders will take to the track on their Yoshimura-powered GSX-Rs on Friday morning for the first free practice session, before competing in the opening qualifying practice in the afternoon. Saturday morning will see the final qualifying session to confirm the riders that will progress to Superpole, where the top-15 will fight it out for grid positions in Sunday’s two 21-lap races.
“I like Imola and I think we can take some positives from the Portimao weekend because we improved the bike in quite a few areas. I felt quite strong on some parts of the track compared to the guys I was racing with so with any luck we can qualify properly and have a good weekend in Italy. We still need to improve the GSX-R slowly and take things step-by-step so I can ride to my absolute limits. It would be nice to have a good result in Imola because all the guys are working very hard and we need to get the Suzuki into the podium fight.”
“Imola feels small and because of that it seems like you have a lot of power, so it feels like a strange circuit for me, but I like strange circuits so I’m really looking forward to it! I crashed in the last chicane last year in the 600 class; it was my first crash of the year, so I don’t want to make that mistake this year. We hope to be consistent like Portugal and make sure we finish both races in Italy, but I want to be faster. We hope to make more improvements to the FIXI Crescent Suzuki so that I can close the gap to the leaders. My aim at Imola is to be in a strong position on race-day so that I can try to start the race faster and stay in touch with the first group.”