Newly-crowned World Superbike Champion Sylvain Guintoli has branded former Aprilia team-mate Marco Melandri’s team-orders antics as ‘a bit ridiculous.
In exclusive interview published today in Bikesport News, the Leicestershire resident was somewhat confused by the Italian’s behaviour at the French round but says he has more respect for the former MotoGP man for going his own way in race two.
“The way he behaved in the first race made no sense; it was ridiculous really. If you’re following team orders, you either follow them properly or you don’t. So I’ve got more respect for him in the second race when he didn’t and he won the race,” said Guintoli.
“In the first race, we were so well ahead that we weren’t even racing. I had rolled it off and was controlling Johnny, who was about ten seconds behind, and I was not racing because I knew we had team orders in a situation like that. But he came past me as if to say ‘I am faster than you’ and if there had been a red flag he would have taken the points off me.
“Then he rolled it off and made a big drama with the waving as if to say ‘you come past me now, blah, blah’. It was just a bit ridiculous. In the end, he gave me five points but I won the championship by six so it made zero difference.”
Get the full Guintoli story, including his thoughts on Honda and hauling his family of four around the globe, in the new issue of Bikesport News, out today. Or buy the digital issue here