Team Alstare Suzuki rider Michel Fabrizio is looking for a change in fortune at this weekend's 10th round of the World Superbike Championship in Germany, as the Italian has not fared well at the Nurburgring circuit in recent years.
In his past three outings, Fabrizio's best result has been a sixth - in 2008 - but he is positive that he can do better this time out aboard the GSX-R1000 Suzuki.
The 5.137 kilometre circuit is full of changes in altitude, but is generally fast and flowing apart from a couple of areas; principally turn one at the end of the start-finish straight: The approach to it is blind and it's very easy to get caught-out on the exit due to the change in camber.
"It's true that my recent results at the Nurburgring have not been so good, so this is a great opportunity for a big improvement. The track is quite technical and although it is not so hard to learn, it is hard to shave off those last fractions-of-a-second. Turn one is very slow and the track seems to narrow right down on the approach and it's easy to get tangled-up with another rider or two! The exit is also a bit tricky and it's a turn where there's always a lot going on - especially if you are in a group.
"The first day of practice is going to feel a bit strange because it will be the best part of five weeks since I have been on the bike and I'm sure we'll have a lot to do - especially as it will be my first time here on the Suzuki after three years on a twin. As always, may aim is to get a good race set-up as soon as I can and then try and really attack in Superpole. I still haven't been on the front-row grid this season and that's something I would dearly like to change this weekend. The series is so competitive and small fractions-of-a-second sometimes separate the top 15, so it's important to do well in Superpole and then make good starts in the races. I'm hoping for my first front-row of the grid and two good results on race day."
Race 1: 1 Jonathan Rea (GBR-Honda), 2 Carlos Checa (ESP-Ducati), 3 Cal Crutchlow (GBR-Yamaha), 4 Max Biaggi (ITA-Aprilia), 5 Tom Sykes (GBR-Kawasaki), 6 Leon Haslam (GBR-Alstare Suzuki). Michel Fabrizio (ITA-Ducati) DNF.
Race 2: 1 Noriyuki Haga (JPN-Ducati), 2 Rea, 3 Haslam (Alstare Suzuki), 4 Crutchlow, 5 Biaggi, 6 Sylvain Guintoli (FRA-Alstare Suzuki). 19 Michel Fabrizio (ITA-Ducati).