Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) had been waiting a long time for a day like yesterday’s at Laguna Seca – home of the 9th round of the 2019 World Superbike Championship – more precisely since April 2018, when the Welshman of Ducati won his last SBK win at Aragon.
However, his long fast was interrupted yesterday on the Californian track thanks to a fantastic progression in Race 2, which allowed him to detach by more than 3 seconds at the finish line the arrembante Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) and thus take his 30th victory in his career, a result with which he also climbed to 7th position in the championship.
Yesterday’s success also officially closed the laborious period of adaptation of the Briton to the new Panigale V4 R, a bike that had dominated “far and wide” the first part of the season in the hands of his new pits mate Alvaro Bautista but with which he, until a few weeks ago, had struggled to keep up with the best.
In the last couple of rounds at Misano and Donington, Davies had shown more competitiveness on the Bologna 4-cylinder bike, and the peak of this growth was reached this weekend at Laguna Seca, where he also took two excellent second places in Race 1 and in the Superpole Race.
Finally putting months of frustration behind him, a visibly satisfied Chaz Davies recounted his joy at the end of Race 2:
“This victory means a lot to me, because so far this has been a long and difficult season. It’s been almost a year and a half since I last managed to get on the top step of the podium, so much so that at one point I almost wondered if I could win again or not.
“Today I had the confirmation that, continuing to work hard and never give up, the results sooner or later come, and in fact now we enjoy the victory!
Unfortunately for Ducati, the excellent weekend of Chaz Davies coincided with the blackest weekend for Alvaro Bautista, who ran into a resounding “triple zero” that strongly compromised his chances of running for the title. For the 32-year-old Welshman, the win is still to be shared with all the smiling faces on his side of the box:
“My team did a great job, especially at the end of Friday morning’s FP1 session when we made a major change to the bike’s set-up.
“To be honest today I wasn’t sure I had the right pace to win: yesterday, in Race 1, Johnny kept a strong and steady pace, while I had chosen the wrong tyre. So it wasn’t obvious that with the tyre I used today I would be able to make a difference. I am very happy to have achieved this result before the summer break!
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