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Max is Back … and He is Way Fast!

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I think the popular saying is “Old Guys Rule”, and Max Biaggi (Aprilia) proved that earlier today at Misano by leading both practice sessions. Lest you think it is “just practice”, the six-time World champion (four 250 GP and two WSB) dominated with 0.5 seconds over P2 in FP1 and 0.3 seconds over P2 in FP2.  More to the point, the 43-year-old lapped faster than the lap record during a WSB race, and was within 1/10th of a second of the outright WSB lap record for Misano (held by Kawasaki’s Tom Sykes). Welcome back Max!

Here is what he had to say following today’s practice sessions: “I’m happy to be here and I want to sincerely thank Aprilia and the Piaggio Group for having given me this fantastic opportunity. I’m working with the guys from the Noale test team whom I tested with these past months for MotoGP and Superbike and it is both fun and strange to be here in what is no longer a testing atmosphere but a race situation. I am really pleased for them as well. Here I am back in my element of riders, friends, fantastic knights on steel steeds who ride fast, and seeing them from the inside of the competition is much different than commenting them on TV. Now we are thinking about Saturday. I think the farther forward we go the harder it will be. Times will start dropping in practice, tyre availability will go down and we’ll be tackling the electronics that I’ve never tested. We’ll see. It won’t be simple and we’ll also need a bit of luck.”

13 Comments

  1. Provologna says:

    Man, the cosmetic design of the whole package (including the rider) may be the handsomest race garb of all time. Thinking about the individual colors, you’d never think they work together, which would be very wrong. Kudos to the artist. Great vision. Max never looked better.

  2. Gutterslob says:

    The return of Norm G!!

    • Norm G. says:

      FISTPUMP…!!!

      • Norm G. says:

        seriously though, same as bayliss, this was always going to be different story come race day.

        • Dave says:

          Bayliss didn’t top the time sheets or come within 10th’s of the lap record at the track. Come to think of it, Rossi doesn’t either. 6th in race 1 is also a great deal more encouraging than Bayliss’ result.

  3. Brinskee says:

    Glad to see the Roman is dset up for a good race tomorrow. Let’s see what he’s still got.

  4. pigiron says:

    Just another reminder of how far ahead the pool of talent is in MotoGP compared to WSB where even a geriatric a-hole like Biaggi can do well.

  5. Philip says:

    I grew to like Biaggi during his WSBK career, never cared for his attitude when he was younger but he did create interesting theater. I have always been impressed with his natural ability to go fast and even more so when I discovered he had never even tried racing a motorcycle until he was 18 years old. We are seeing some of that talent this weekend. Good luck to him.