The modernised Enzo e Dino Ferrari circuit is a known quantity for Kawasaki World Superbike Racing Team duo Broc Parkes and Makoto Tamada, thanks to an official test session in July this year. The ever-improving race specification of the Ninja ZX-10R will be a boon to both Parkes and Tamada, with each of them keen to eradicate memories of the last round in Germany, where promising qualifying results ended in a first lap multi-rider accident.
With both riders now 100% fit and running a much improved race package compared to the July test, this race is an important part of the season run-in. Only two rounds remain after Imola, one in France next week, and the season finale in Portugal on October 25.
Imola returns to the WSB calendar for the first time since 2006, with a few modifications to its 4.936km length for safety, and lots of modernisation obvious in the pits and paddock complex.
Broc Parkes: “I’m looking forward to the Imola race as I have had podiums in WSS there before and also a couple of top tens in WSB. I really enjoy the circuit and it has a great atmosphere. Nurburgring was a tough weekend after I was taken out in the first race and I was lucky not to break any bones, but I had skin taken off my bottom which made it uncomfortable to ride. I’m feeling good now and ready to race. For Imola, we have some more things to try on the bike so I’m looking forward to seeing how it goes. Each race we seem to be making progress and I would really like to be back in the top ten at Imola.”
Makoto Tamada: “The test went well earlier in the season at Imola and I am pretty confident about the circuit. We were still relatively behind the leaders in terms of lap times at the test, but the bike feeling has improved significantly since then and I was confident on the race set-up at Nürburgring. Unfortunately the crash in race one took me out of both races. I have no significant injury and my broken finger from Brno is healed so I am 100% fit for Imola. If the bike works well as it did in Brno and Nürburgring, the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R should finish in an easy top ten. I guess it depends on me if we can finish in the top five, or even on the podium.”