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WorldSBK Aragon: 'Amazing' results for crocked Vierge

Despite breaking a rib in a testing crash at Barcelona’s Montmelo circuit recently HRC's Xavi Vierge was seventh, ninth and eighth in his first three WorldSBK races at Motorland.

Few imagined he would be quite that potent first time out, but a combination of some traditional WorldSBK forces (think Redding, Gerloff, Laverty, Baz) having a tough time, and Vierge’s consistent smooth pace, meant he kept his Motorland best for first.

He was quietly elated, despite the obvious pain from his rib injuries, in the post-race one chat, saying, “I think it was an amazing result for us. If we took into consideration that 12 days ago I broke my rib in the Montmelo test - at that time I would have signed up for my race one result here.


" I am really happy because when we started this weekend we did not know if I could finish a race. We finished seventh, which is really positive for us to understand how everything works, to have a lot of information about the bike and of course to see that with that injury we were quite competitive. We have to say thanks a lot to the physiotherapist who made it possible and of course to the team. They supported me a lot.”

Riding with broken ribs, one or more, is very painful as every movement multiplies the discomfort. So how ugly did it get for Xavi?

“It was not so bad because since the second lap I was thinking a lot about my body. I tried to go as sooth as I could to finish the race and then see for Sunday. Now I feel quite a lot of pain…”

Going on to finish well inside the top ten each time on Sunday made it a highly successful weekend, but it was that Saturday race that delivered the peak performance - first time out for both riders of course - translating to sixth for Iker Lecuona and seventh for Vierge.

Such a result did not likely after winter testing, not for both riders at least. Vierge understands the point but disagreed about their post-testing potential, saying, “Really, the winter was really good for us but in the tests we did, we were alone. So, really, we did not know our potential until that Montmelo test. Then we saw that we were quite competitive. But until the season starts, you do not know the reality. Now we see the reality we discovered our potential. Of course, there are a lot of jobs in front for us, but it is a good start.”

What about the Pirelli tyres in the race, which are a world away in philosophy and construction from Moto2 Dunlops or MotoGP Michelins?

“As I said, since the second lap I did not push on my limits, as my body did not permit that, but this was really positive because my tyres were really, really constant all the race,” said Vierge, a remarkable sixth overall in the championship already. “We need to discover - when I will be fit and I can push from the first lap - how it works, but at the moment I like it a lot.”

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