World Superbikes at Monza requires more considerations for safety than other tracks because of the three 300kmh sections. Weather plays a huge factor in safety but conditions in the Superstock 1000 race hinted at a good day of racing.
Unfortunately, that was not to be the case. Rain ended race one after only three laps and got progressively worse forcing cancellation of the restart.
The race started in good conditions, in spite of Mark Aitchison planting his bike in the warm-up lap. Tom Sykes got the hole shot and led the race for all three laps, but Marco Melandri skidded off at the Parabolica at the end of the first lap. At the end of the third lap, Hopkins crashed out at the Parabolica and the red flag came out.
While the teams were preparing for a restart, Max Biaggi, who broke down on the last lap and had to get a long push from Carlos Checa, was having his engine replaced and was due to miss the race and become the first high-profile victim of the single bike rule, but again, luck played a huge part.
The Pirelli wet tyres, as was seen yesterday, cannot handle the fast bits while also being effective in the wet. Delamination meant that there laps was the absolute maximum anyone could get out of that tyre. When the rain passed the limit of cut slicks, racing would become dangerous, fast. The riders held an on-grid meeting and decided to send some representatives, including a relieved Max Biaggi, out in safety cars. As the Alfa Romeos were exiting the Ascari chicane, the skies over the Parabolica opened and it became clear that racing wasn't an option.
Many people were eager to throw the blame at Pirelli for not having a tyre that could be raced, but Monza is such a special case that nobody can make a tyre that can deal with both standing water and its insanely fast straights.
Safety won out in the end.