Laverty Guintoli WSBK 2013 Monza preview

The Welshman, the 2011 FIM Supersport World Championship winner, has enjoyed an excellent start to the season, and a double win in the second round at Aragon has put him firmly among the title contenders. After finishing fifth and seventh at round three in Assen, Davies is joint-second in the standings, 28 points adrift of leader Sylvain Guintoli. The series now heads to Monza, a circuit dominated by four flat-out blasts where top speed is at a premium. In order to extract the maximum from his machine, 26-year-old Davies flew straight from Assen to Munich, spending an afternoon in the wind tunnel working on his riding position. Davies hopes his attempt to reduce drag and improve his slipstreaming ability will lead to more competitive performances at the hallowed circuit near Milan. “It was a really interesting afternoon”, he said. “When testing on a track, you try new development parts and different settings, but you are not working on your body. So it was great to experiment in a stable environment with my riding position, to move myself around on the bike, to have elbows and shoulders in different positions and to then see in the data what difference it makes. I have learned that I have to try to get myself inside the bike sooner on the exit of the corner in order to reduce the drag and be faster on the straights. It was good to see what difference that will make, if we can improve that for the next race. Especially on a track like Monza, the aerodynamic efficiency is very important because every lap we are wide open for much longer than any other circuit on the calendar. Having the right riding position helps me to make best use of the powerful BMW engine on the straights.”

Aprilia rider Eugene Laverty, meanwhile, hopes to repeat his previous form at Monza, and knows he has the machinery to fight for victory. “Monza has always been kind to me. I won the World Supersport race in 2010 and then I achieved a double victory in 2011,” he said. “The Aprilia engine is very strong on top speed, so I feel we should be right at the sharp end.”