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Lucchi shines as Aprilia demonstrate their home advantage

Lucchi shines as Aprilia demonstrate their home advantage

Having won pole in the quarter litre series for the last two years, won in 1998, and been on the podium three other times, Lucchi this morning displayed his familiarity with the course, and set a fastest time which not one rider could get to within a second of, in the 250cc first free practice session.

The early pace was being set by Briton Jeremy McWilliams, who in the early stages was setting consistently quicker times which no-one else could match, it remains to be seen however whether this can be reproduced under racing conditions, which has been the problem for the Northern Irish MS Aprilia rider this season. However after 20 minutes of the session gone, Lucchi began piling the pressure on the other riders, who now must be thinking about how they will go about making up the second advantage he has.

It was also a good session for Aprilia, as the first eight riders were all riding their machines, although this was not too much of a surprise, as this is their testing circuit. The two riders just behind Lucchi and McWilliams were home riders Locatelli and Melandri. It did mean however that current championship leader Daijiro Katoh, who has won every single race this year, was pushed down to being tenth quickest, something which his Telefónica MoviStar Honda team will want to improve on in this afternoon´s qualifying session.

250cc, 2001, Gran Premio Cinzano d'Italia, FP1

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