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Sensational victory for Melandri.
The RS Cube again in the points race.
A clean win by Marco "Macio" Melandri whose roar was heard
loud and clear in the land of lions. Three Aprilia 250s on
the rostrum: Battaini 2nd, Nieto 3rd. The last time Aprilia
made a clean sweep of the podium was in Barcelona, 1998
(Rossi-Harada-Capirossi).
Marco built up his victorious strategy with a shrewd choice
of race tyres - very hard on both front and rear. To this he
added a great launch off the line and a gradual build-up
which enabled him to increase his lead over the pack with
stunning perseverance, until he was over eight seconds clear.
Once he had a good gap, Marco just had to think about
keeping his cool and concentration right the way through to
the chequered flag.
This is Macio’s second victory in the 250 class, which he
adds to another seven victories in 125.

Marco Melandri # 3 (MS APRILIA RACING) – 1st - 42’38.066
"Hard tyres for the race and a fast start: after three laps
I realised I could move out ahead and gradually build up
to make my escape. The most important thing in the second
half of the race was to keep up my concentration, and
indeed I lowered my pace even though the tyres would have
let me stay down at 1’ 37" . I wanted to keep my advantage
under control and, at this point, I decided on a "tactical"
race. The bike and engine were as generous as ever, even
though it felt like I had 500 revs less when I got onto
the track, but then it cleaned out and everything went
fine. It was hot and the tyres slipped, but I had no
problems. I’m really happy: this result has paid off a lot
of hard work I did this winter preparing for the
championship. I made an enormous effort, so I think I’ll
dedicate this important victory to myself. The entire
team did a fantastic job. A lot of work was done during
the test sessions over the past few days, and we sure saw
the results today."

MotoGP
Laconi and the RS Cube again in the points race. New data
acquired for project development.
The Aprilia RS Cube ends the second race in its young life.
Laconi brings it under the flag in 15th position. He thus
earns one precious, encouraging point, despite taking it
for two off-track rides. The team programme for a project
like this also provides for development work during the
Sunday competition, up against the others in the heat of a
race. What is encouraging is the fact that the RS Cube
was placed just 1.5 seconds from the sensational Valentino
Rossi in yesterday’s test sessions, and fell behind today
partly because it twice took an off-track excursion. Régis
Laconi rode an aggressive race and, after twice going wide
due to lack of grip at the front while braking, he got
back onto the track and raced ahead with the same
determination. Development work will be continuing at "home"
: some test sessions are to be held before the next
meeting in Jerez.
Laconi is 12th in the World Championship ratings with
9 points (8 in Suzuka) (1 in Welkom)

# 55 Régis Laconi – (MS APRILIA RACING) – 15th - 46’12.192
"Twice off track: the first on the penultimate corner, and
then again on turn 2. I lost grip at the front when braking,
got the bike under control with my arms and went straight.
After a short trip off-track, I got back into the race on
both occasions. What I wanted to do was to finish the race
and be able to attack. I pushed as hard as I could, giving
the tyres a rough time, and by the end I didn’t have much
leeway. Even before the green light came on, we knew we
might have some problems of grip at the front: this was
caused by the tyre/fork setting, but I tried just to ride
over the problem. I’m pleased I got through to the end: we
got plenty of data for the development programme."


<font color=red>Live it</font color=red> <font color=blue>></font color=blue> <font color=red>Ride it</font color=red> <font color=blue>></font color=blue> <font color=red>Race it</font color=red>
 
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