The long summer break, interrupted only by last week’s tests at Aragon (Spain), is officially over. Warm sunshine welcomed the WorldSBK paddock to the Magny-Cours circuit (France), where the first free practice for the Pirelli French Round will kick off tomorrow morning at 10.30am.
The riders and the Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team (which on Tuesday announced Nicolò Bulega as Alvaro Bautista’s team-mate in the 2024 WorldSBK season), are already hard at work at the transalpine circuit.
The weekend’s race programme includes Race-1 on Saturday at 14.00, followed by the Superpole Race on Sunday morning at 11.00. Race-2 will get underway at 15.15 due to the concomitance with the Gran Premio San Marino and Riviera di Rimini of MotoGP, in which the Aruba.it Racing team will be involved for the second wild card of the season with Michele Pirro and the Ducati Desmosedici GP.
Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #1)
“This summer I’ve been training a lot, I’ve been with my family, I’ve made good use of the time available. We then had the chance to test at Argon where, especially on the second day, we tried some solutions that could come in handy. Magny-Cours is not an easy track with very strong braking areas, long bends, and lots of changes directions. We were competitive last year and we will start from that base although we’ll have to work and make some changes in light of the reduced number of revs. I would like to welcome Nicolò Bulega as my teammate for next season. He is having a great championship in SuperSport and he will undoubtedly be a very competitive rider in WorldSBK. At the same time, I wish the best of luck to Michael Rinaldi. I am sorry that he will be leaving the team because I got on very well with him: he is a good guy, a fast rider and I know he is working well to improve. I am sure he will take great satisfaction”.
Michael Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #21)
“We arrive at Magny-Cours with a great desire to get back on track. Last week’s tests were useful as we tried some solutions in terms (*manca of set-up?)* that we might need in the last part of this season. It’s going to be a very special weekend with weather that is probably unprecedented for this round and temperatures always very high. I will give it my all, as always, and try to get the best results. I can’t wait to get on track with my Ducati Panigale V4R”.
Current Supersport World Championship leader Nicolò Bulega also returns to the track after the Aragon tests aboard the Ducati Panigale V2 of the Aruba.it Racing WSSP team.
Nicolò Bulega (Aruba.it Racing WSSP #11)
“I can’t wait to get on track. We arrived at Magny-Cours with the aim of picking up where we left off before the summer break when the feeling with the Panigale V2 was really good. We are focused on this last part of the championship. Obviously, I’m extremely happy to have signed my contract for next season with the Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team but now we just have to think about closing this adventure in Supersport in the best possible way”.