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The Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team in the spotlight in Qatar for the final round: Davies and Melandri ready to battle

The Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team is ready to head to Qatar for the 2017 WorldSBK season finale. The Losail track, located just outside Doha, will once again turn on its floodlights to host two night races, which this year will be held on Friday and Saturday. In the stunning desert landscape, Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri are ready to battle for one final time to take home as many points as possible.

The Welshman, who scored a spectacular double at Losail in 2016, has his mind set on finishing the year in second position in the riders’ standings. Davies is currently tied with Sykes as runner-up in the championship, but can count on a higher number of wins. Melandri, who showed great competitiveness in the last round at Jerez despite some technical issues, is determined to collect his first WorldSBK podiums in Qatar and finish the season on a high note.

Heading into Round 13, Davies (363 points) and Melandri (301 points) are respectively 2nd and 4th in the championship. The Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team will resume action Thursday at 17:45 local time (CET +2) for the first free-practice session.

Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #7)
“I’m looking forward to the last round. I do like racing in the lights at night, as it brings a different element to it. In the last couple of years, the Panigale R has been really competitive in Qatar. We improved quite a lot over there and last year we finally had a really strong pace, which led us to a double win. We didn’t seize second place in the championship back then because we headed into the last round trailing by a few points, but this time we’re even, so it’ll be exciting. We’re looking forward to the battle and we’re ready to put up a fight. We’re keen to finish the year on a high note.”

Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #33)
“To me, Locali is one of the most beautiful tracks on the calendar. It also quite suits my riding style, as it’s a fast, flowing circuit. To ride at night, also, adds a special feeling to it, even though in terms of riding it’s basically the same. I expect us to be strong, also since the track has some things in common with Jerez, where we were really fast. At each race the Panigale R and I jell further, and I feel particularly motivated after missing what could have been a win in the last round. I want to finish the season with a strong performance, also to remind all our rivals that we’ll be a consistent threat next year.”

Circuit information

Country: Qatar
Name: Losail International Circuit
Length: 5.380 km
Corners: 16 (6 left, 10 right)
Pole position: left
Race distance: 17 laps/91.460 km

RECORDS
Fastest lap: Rea (Kawasaki), 1:56.356 (166,455 km/h) – 2016
Circuit record: Rea (Kawasaki), 1:56.974 (165,575 km/h) – 2016
Superpole: Rea (Kawasaki), 1:56.356 (166,455 km/h) – 2016

Rider information

Chaz Davies
Bike: Ducati Panigale R
Race number: 7
Age: 30 (Born 10/02/1987 in Knighton, Wales)
SBK races: 150
SBK wins: 27
SBK podiums: 65

Marco Melandri
Bike: Ducati Panigale R
Race number: 33
Age: 35 (Born 07/08/1982 in Ravenna, Italy)
SBK races: 126
SBK wins: 20
SBK podiums: 61

Weekend Schedule (CET +2)

Thursday, November 2
17:45 – 18:45 FP1
21:00 – 22:00 FP2

Friday, November 3
16:20 – 16:45 FP3
18:30 – 18:45 Superpole 1
18:55 – 19:10 Superpole 2
21:00 Race 1

Saturday, November 4
17:30 – 17:45 Warm-up
21:00 Race 2

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