Carlos Checa is hopeful that the SBK Ducati Alstare team’s two-day test last week at Jerez in Spain pays dividends this weekend when the World Superbike Championship makes its stop in Assen, Holland for round three.
So far the 2013 season has been a struggle for Checa and the team with the new 1199 R Panigale.
“I hope that the tests we carried out in Jerez after the race in Aragon bear fruit this weekend at Assen,” Checa said in a team release. “Those two days were very important and in The Netherlands, on a track that is traditionally less problematic for the Ducati, maybe we’ll be able to make some good progress. I feel fit and healthy but the unknown at Assen is always the weather – I’ve seen some wet forecasts already so we need to work to be prepared come Sunday, whatever the conditions.”
Although Checa failed to score points in the opening round in Australia, the Spaniard bounced back with seventh and eighth place finishes in round two at Motorland Aragon in Spain. His teammate Ayrton Badovini also scored his first points of the championship with two 10th-place finishes.
Last year, Checa finished third in race one at Assen and 17th in race two. In 2011, he was third in race one and won the second race.
Badovini’s best finish at Assen was seventh in race two last year.
“I’ve been up up at my parents’ place and working with my personal trainer during the last days, so I should be stronger when I get to Assen,” Badovini said. “It’s a track that I like, and where I hope we’ll suffer a little less as far as the riding characteristics of the bike are concerned. I’m feeling confident, also because during the recent tests at Jerez we identified a few things that weren’t working with my riding style and we started to understand what I prefer etc. So in Assen we’ll have a clearer idea as to how to prepare my bike.”