Round seven of the 2018 WorldSBK season will see the paddock head for Brno in the Czech Republic. The fast and flowing circuit is a firm favorite with MotoGP riders and fans and is sure to be well received by the Superbike riders when they return to action in the hills and valleys for the first time since 2011. That season saw Marco Melandri do the double for Yamaha but will that past form matter this weekend?
Yamaha seek to maintain momentum
Yamaha will certainly hope that their previous form, three Brno victories, is a good indicator that the Japanese firm can expect a strong showing this weekend. At Donington Park, Michael van der Mark delivered the first victories for Yamaha since their return to WorldSBK, and the Dutchman's confidence will be high this weekend. After claiming the first ever Dutch wins in WorldSBK history his stock is higher than ever, and it couldn't have come at a better time with contracts set to be signed for 2018.
Ducati look to bounce back
After a miserable weekend at Donington Park, their worst since 2015, Ducati will be motivated to get back to form and prove that their form in Britain was a momentary blip rather than something we can expect for the rest of the season. With the development of their all-new V4 certain to become more and more of a focus in the coming months, Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri will know that returning to the sharp end of the field will be crucial this weekend. Xavi Fores said that his Panigale was unrideable at the last round, but the Spaniard will feel confident of returning to podium contention in Brno.
A new Brno winner?
After Van der Mark's wins at Donington Park the Dutchman will be full of confidence, but only two active riders have won WorldSBK races at Brno: Marco Melandri and Jonathan Rea. The duo have won in multiple classes at the Czech track but Tom Sykes and Chaz Davies will be looking to add their names to the list of winners. With Toprak Razgatlioglu having claimed his first career podium last time out, the future star of Turkish racing will be out to impress once again.
Rider market to become clearer
With the MotoGP silly season now becoming clearer following the craziest week in memory, the WorldSBK paddock should start to see some moves confirmed in the coming weeks. There is an expectation that the start of those moves will be made either at Brno this weekend or at Laguna Seca in two weeks time.
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