News 5 May 2010

WSBK: Haga claims Monza weekend will be tough for Ducati

Haga has had a difficult start to season 2010 with Ducati Xerox.

Haga has had a difficult start to season 2010 with Ducati Xerox.

Ducati Xerox star Noriyuki Haga has admitted that this weekend’s fifth round of the Superbike World Championship at Monza in Italy will be a difficult one for the Japanese veteran, stating that his factory twin-cylinder 1198 R doesn’t have the top-end power of his four-cylinder rivals.

Haga has had a horror start to the season, with a single victory being the lone highlight so far, not listing the Monza circuit as a favourite of his despite numerous podiums and wins in recent seasons.

“This weekend will be tough – I like the Monza track but at the same time I know that my 1198 does not have the top speed of some of the other bikes and with Monza’s long straights, it will be hard for us I think,” Haga explained. “Nevertheless, I’ll be opening the gas and giving 200 percent.”

Teammate Michel Fabrizio put on a great performance at Monza last season, winning race one and finishing race two in second, listing Monza as one of his favourite circuits.

“I had a good weekend here last year and am very happy that my first ever Superbike race win came in front of my home crowd, at Monza,” Fabrizio said. “We’ve not had an easy run of things recently but testing went well at Misano last week and I’ll be doing everything to put on a great performance this weekend. We need to start to make up lost ground.”