Friday, July 31


Last year Marco Melandri (left) and Sylvain Guintoli led an 
Aprilia 1-2 
sweep of both races at Sepang.
This weekend the Superbike World Championship is at Malaysia's Sepang circuit for the second time.  Last year's event, which saw Marco Melandri win both races on his factory Aprilia, was the first time the SWC series had been held at the ultra-modern facility.

Malaysia first hosted SWC racing in 1990 at the old Shah Alam circuit.  History shows Australian Rob Phillis put his Kawasaki 750 on pole but Italian Fabrizio Pirovano won both races on his Yamaha.

Read about the history of the Malaysian round here

This year Jonathan Rea leads the series into Malaysia, with a very healthy 125 points lead over Kawasaki team-mate Tom Sykes, with Welshman Chaz Davies third in the series just 20 points behind Sykes after a superb double win at Laguna Seca on the Racing Ducati Panigale.

Last year Davies scored 4-8 results at Sepang but with the improved performance from the booming Italian twin he will be aiming much higher than that this year.

Last year, both races were an Aprilia 1-2 sweep and with Max Biaggi returning to the team for another hit out, it will be interesting to see how the Italian V4s fare this year.
Melandri and Guintoli in an Aprilia tango.

Jonathan Rea scored 6-6 placings on the Pata Honda while Sykes was skittled in the first race at Sepang by then team-mate Loris Baz but bounced back to finish third in the second race.

Both Kawasaki men will be aiming much higher this year.