Brilliant victory for Chaz in Imola race 1
The Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team seized the top step of the podium in Race 1 in Imola, the “home” track for the Borgo Panigale manufacturer and a favorite destination today for the many Ducati fans who cheered the riders in the paddock and the grandstands. Davies led the race from the first until the last corner after topping all previous sessions between practice and qualifying, taking the “holeshot” from pole position and the first, historic victory for the Panigale R in Italy.
Chaz also posted the fastest lap of the race (rewriting the circuit record) with a blistering 1:46.700 during lap 3, pulling away from the group together with championship leader Jonathan Rea. During lap 8, a mistake by his rival in turn 7 allowed Davies to gain a five-second advantage, a margin he comfortably administered until the checkered flag.
Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #7) – 1st
“Today’s race was just perfect. I got a clean start and then I got my head down to push since the very first lap and make my own rhythm. At first, the gap between Jonathan and I was going back and forth, but after a few laps I tried to break away and then the pitboard signaled a five-second margin, but I kept pushing to stay in the high 1:47 mark as long as possible. To win here is different from any other track and simply special, Imola is Ducati’s backyard. From Aragon onwards, my Panigale R has always been competitive and in the ballpark. The latest engine upgrades allowed us to be on par with our rivals, and I want to thank Ducati for giving me a complete package. Now I hope we can repeat ourselves tomorrow. The forecast says it might rain, and we need to be ready no matter what.”