Locatelli Pushes for the Podium in Misano but Pata Prometeon Yamaha Leave Wanting More

June 16 2024

Locatelli Pushes for the Podium in Misano but Pata Prometeon Yamaha Leave Wanting More

Locatelli Pushes for the Podium in Misano but Pata Prometeon Yamaha Leave Wanting More

Local Italian rider Andrea Locatelli took another strong fourth-place finish in the 10-lap Superpole Race this morning, before crossing the line P5 in Race 2 of the 2024 FIM Superbike World Championship at Misano World Circuit today.

The strongest weekend “at home” in Misano for Locatelli since his ascension to the WorldSBK premier class in 2021 was a welcome positive, but both “Loka” and his crew were left wanting more especially after a battle for the podium with Alvaro Bautista (Ducati) in Race 2.

Following a major crash yesterday afternoon and despite damage to his left hand, teammate Jonathan Rea was cleared as fit to ride and ground out two top-ten results, an eighth in the morning’s 10-lap Superpole Race and tenth in Race 2 after a mistake from another rider put him on the back foot on the opening lap.

The results were little consolation to a difficult weekend and Rea will focus on recovery from the injury to be fit for his and the team’s own home round at Donington Park next month, from 12-14 July.

Andrea Locatelli – SPRC: P4 / Race 2: P5

“Honestly, I would like to do more and I would like to be on the podium, especially today at my home race and with great support from my fans from all over Italy. But we know we need to continue working and believe in ourselves, and continue to make progress forward to be there. Today for sure was not easy, but we got a lot of points, we didn’t make any mistakes and took a lot of confidence for the coming races. We had a good weekend and I would have liked to fight for the podium like at some other track where we have been stronger and can fight more with our competitors, but I think we did a good job, we were working very well and I want to say thanks to the guys for their efforts. It is always difficult in the hot conditions in Misano but we were a big step faster compared to last year, we raced at full gas and did our best – so, overall, not too bad!”

Jonathan Rea – SPRC: P8 / Race 2: P10

“Obviously a really disappointing weekend but I also have to feel very fortunate that I got away with that crash yesterday, because it was a huge one and aside from having a pretty sore left wrist and hand, physically on the bike I was not so bad. I made two good starts today in both races, apart from where I got tangled up with Remy out-braking himself at Turn 8 on the first lap of Race 2 and I lost a lot of track position. But I just struggled to really get down to business when the tyre was fresh. The race came to me a little bit better at the end when the tyre was moving, but I couldn’t get the best out of the bike at the beginning and didn’t have the confidence. The current performance level is frustrating, but it's clear that the R1 can be competitive so we need to find a way to translate my feeling to adapt and make changes that help me to get the best out of this package.”

Paul Denning – Team Principal, Pata Prometeon Yamaha:

“It was nice to see a big and enthusiastic crowd in Misano this weekend and even if the team was not quite able to achieve the results we were hoping for, which is to be on the podium, we’ve got to be pleased with Loka’s performance in qualifying and all three races. Misano has always been a tough track for him and 2024 has seen a huge step forward in performance compared to last year. He was able to back up yesterday’s fourth place with the same result in the Superpole Race this morning, but a huge slide and a very near crash when fighting with Bautista for third position dropped him back a long way and meant that in the end, fifth place was the best he could do. On JR’s side it’s a positive that he was even able to ride today. His left hand is swollen and very painful – so to grind out two top-ten results has to be seen as a positive based on what could have happened in such a major accident yesterday. Clearly, JR, Yamaha and the team are a million miles away from satisfied with those results: so now it’s time to breathe a little bit, for JR to get back to full fitness and to go step-by-step towards producing the speed that we all know he and the R1 are capable of.”

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