This weekend was all go in Misano Adriatico with the holiday season peaking, the famous Pink Night festival, and of course, Round 3 of the Trofeo Italiano Amatori series at Misano International Circuit. We spent the week previous in town to prepare and were lucky enough to see the Ducati Motogp bikes testing on track. So as you can imagine -my wheels were already spinning with excitement leading into the weekend.
Friday and Saturday were well spent trying a few small changes to the bike set up, especially as we were using Metzler tyres this weekend. They hooked up superbly in the 30+ degree temperatures. I finished the first qualifying in 11th position out of 38 riders. We managed to improve the bike and a few corners even more and moved up to 8th in the second qualifying by going just 0.3 seconds faster. The times were so close I knew it was going to be a great race!
My mum arrived all the way from NZ in time to be at the track for qualifying so it was awesome for her to be here. She even said she was surprised by the see the amazing standard of race meetings over here.
Sundays race saw me with probably my best start to date, coming from eighth on the grid to first position within two corners! It was a big surprise to the other teams, spectators and the commentator – most of whom had never heard of me as I was just a wildcard entry for this race – but not my team who have believed in me all this time and gave nothing but encouragement from pit wall the entire race. The group behind eventually caught me and we had some good dices, before I managed to settle in a rhythm nicely in fourth position. The bike was driving awesome off the corners making it hard for the bunch of riders to pass me; they were only able to close up on brakes. Typical for Misano however, the track was really slippery so when I saw on my lap timer I was doing 1.44s (by far my personal best at this circuit) I was really satisfied. On the last lap the rider in second position succumbed to the poor track conditions and fell down, leaving me to pick up the final place on the podium! What a great emotion. On the warm down lap the flag marshals held out a massive board with number 41 on and were cheering and waving, then I rode in to parc ferme to see my team and mum with massive smiles on their faces. To get to where I am now has been a massive team effort by everyone over the past two years, those at the track and those of you closer to home reading this, and it is great to get an awesome result I feel we all deserve.
So again, thank you WIL Sport management, Geoff and Gaye, Mum, Bikeservice tools, NGK, X-lite, Sidi boots, RaceSupplies, Restorace for making this happen together. Cheers to more before the season is over.