Phillip Island (Australia), 26 February 2011 – The number 1 on his fairing was honoured by World Champion Max Biaggi, riding among the top players on the Australian track at Phillip Island in Superpole. In the first two races for the 2011 WSBK season the Corsair will start from the second spot on the grid after ending just 13 thousandths of a second behind Carlos Checa's fastest time.
The Superpole clock saw Max come through the first two sessions easily, with determination and without any uncertainty.
In the third session the battle of the top eight was conducted in the best way possible by the Team Aprilia Alitalia rider. After ten tense and fascinating minutes the clock stopped for Max at 1'30.895, second best lap at only 13 thousandths behind Checa (Ducati) and in front of Guintoli (Ducati) and Haslam (BMW).
"Wow! Thirteen thousandths are nothing – commented a smiling Max Biaggi - It means that even on this track which has never favoured us we have improved a lot compared to the last two years, coming close to the best. I am truly happy with this result which is to the merit of the team's hard work coming here and testing during the off season. Those tests allowed us to better understand our problems, so we worked hard on the details, small adjustments which can make the difference. The engineers were very good. We are not the fastest, but one thing for sure is that for the races we're competitive. Tomorrow the weather conditions will be important, the temperature and the tyres we choose as a consequence. Then, as always, we'll be ready to give it our all."
At the moment it's a difficult weekend for Leon Camier: his poor health continued to keep him out of Superpole. Then, in the last session of free practice, the English rider showed encouraging improvements in times, but tomorrow will be a tough start from the fifth row (17th time). But if Leon's physical condition improves, hopes for a comeback would not be unfounded. Leon Camier is understandably dissatisfied: "It's frustrating not being able to ride, especially for the first race. Quite simply my cough and general weariness hinder my concentration and consequently from focusing on what I'm doing. At the moment the fever is not the biggest problem, but I feel very tired and even just walking I'm not able to breathe properly, so just imagine after 3-4 laps. At this point I just hope I'm feeling better. Unfortunately tomorrow I'll start from way back and it will be truly difficult".