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The Racing – Ducati Superbike Team on track at Phillip Island for the final pre-season tests

Phillip Island (Australia), Monday 16 February 2015 – The Racing – Ducati Superbike Team has completed day one of a two-day test session at the Australian circuit of Phillip Island. Chaz Davies improves, while unfortunately a serious crash for Davide Giugliano may compromise his race weekend.

In warm and sunny conditions (air temperature 24°C, track 37°C), official riders Chaz Davies and Davide Giugliano continued with the ‘winter’ testing programme, working to set-up their Ducati Panigale R bikes to suit the Australian track. In the morning’s session, Giugliano and Davies closed in third and seventh place respectively with a time of 1’31.948 for the Italian and a 1’32.512 for the Welshman.

During the first exit made at the start of the second session, Giugliano unfortunately suffered a highside while exiting turn 10. Having taken a blow to the lumbar region of his back, the doctors at the medical centre decided to transfer him to Alfred Hospital in Melbourne to carry out a CAT scan. Unfortunately the scan has revealed two small fractures of the L1 and L2 vertebrae, not serious but which may prevent Davide from competing this coming weekend. Tomorrow a specialist at Alfred Hospital will see Giugliano to make a decision and determine the length of the Italian rider’s recovery period.

Giugliano and Davies completed 30 and 50 laps respectively during the four hours of track time available to them. Having missed almost the entire afternoon session due to the crash, Giugliano closed this first day of testing in sixth position (1’31.948), while Davies improved on this morning’s performance with a fastest time of 1’32.114 which positioned him seventh.

The Racing – Ducati Superbike Team will return to the track tomorrow morning with Chaz Davies for the second and last day of official testing.

Quotes at the end of day one of testing:

Davide Giugliano ( Racing – Ducati Superbike Team #34)
“I’m very upset about this afternoon’s crash because things had been going very well. I had good feeling with the bike by the end of session one and I was able to lap with consistently fast times. It was a bad fall and this evening’s CAT has unfortunately revealed two tiny fractures, so I’m really worried that this might compromise my first races of the 2015 season.”

Chaz Davies ( Racing – Ducati Superbike Team #7)
“Things are moving in the right direction. We’ve introduced a new component here, a slightly different swing-arm, and so we’ve focused on setting up the bike around this new part. We haven’t concentrated on lap times, as today’s work has been centred around establishing set-up with a view to race distance. We started to see some progress later in the day but there’s still more to do. Tomorrow we’ll continue to work on the chassis in order to improve rear tyre life, something that’s always critical here at Phillip Island. Once we’ve sorted a few things out we’ll be doing a long-run to see exactly what point we’re at…”