Turkish Grand Prix, Istanbul Park
Race Day, Sunday April 30 2006
DIFFICULT DAY FOR DUCATI MEN
Ducati Team riders Loris Capirossi and Sete Gibernau endured a challenging race at Istanbul Park this afternoon, finishing sixth and 11th. The result was much less than the team had expected after some promising performances in practice and qualifying. Gibernau had particularly high hopes after placing third in yesterday's wet qualifier and leading this morning's dry warm-up. And he looked in superb form in the early stages of the race, leading from the first turn until the end of lap 11, when tyre concerns began to push him down the order.
Capirossi, who went into the race leading the World Championship, also had every reason to expect another fine result after qualifying fourth and placing third in morning warm-up. He battled hard throughout, ending the first lap in seventh, then slipping to eighth before fighting back to sixth on the final lap. Capirossi goes into round four in China in two weeks holding second overall, just one point behind Nicky Hayden. The race, run in cool but dry conditions was won by Italian Marco Melandri
LORIS CAPIROSSI, finished 6th, 2nd in World Championship
"I can't say I'm happy with sixth, that's not where we should be. This weekend we were pretty good in the wet but we didn't have enough time to prepare for a dry race, so it didn't go as we had expected. Anyway, we are just one point off the World Championship lead and we scored some useful points for what is a very long and difficult championship. We did well to take home what we could, plus we were also the first Bridgestone team at the finish. We knew this track might be difficult, so we came here with many tyres but we preferred not to risk new tyres for the race, choosing what we thought would be best. Now we go to China, which will be another difficult track, so we will keep working like crazy. We started the season in the best way and now we have to maintain that focus and keep doing our best."
SETE GIBERNAU, finished 11th, 10th in World Championship
"There's not much to say really apart from that we had a rear-tyre problem. I couldn't do anything about it. The bike was working okay and I was feeling comfortable in the lead, but from lap four I started to feel some vibration from the rear. I was thinking about coming into the pits to change the tyre but I decided to keep going. It's a pity, I was feeling confident."
"That wasn't a great day for us. For sure, we got much less than we expected after practice and morning warm-up. We certainly suffered from having no dry track time yesterday because we couldn't do any long runs with race tyres, but that was the same for everyone, of course. We knew that we had to keep our feet on the ground after our great results at Jerez and Qatar and we knew this would be a difficult track for us. We must keep our positive attitude, and at least it was great to see Sete lead for ten laps and Loris fight like a lion to gain the 6th position. We know Bridgestone is working hard, as well as all our technical sponsors, first among them Shell Advance. With their support better days will come soon".