Written by Dan Evon, Courtesy of AllAboutBikes.com
Max Biaggi didn’t win the round at Imola, and by Biaggi’s standards, didn’t have a good racing day. Biaggi scored a 5th place finish, and an 11 place finish at Imola, but he also walked away with his 5th World title, and his 1st World Superbike Championship.
Going into the weekend’s race, Biaggi still had some distant, but possible competition from Leon Haslam. Haslam trailed by more than 50 points going into the Imola round, and after a DNF in the first race, Biaggi was handed the World Superbike title.
Race two was a victory lap, as the Aprilia rider basked in the glory of his first WSB win. When the riders returned to the paddock and champagne was popped, celebrating not only Biaggi’s Championship win, but also Carlos Checa’s double victory, Max Biaggi put on his championship t-shirt, which listed all the reasons why he was proud to claim his 5th world title.
Here are the 10 reasons why Biaggi is proud to win his 5th world title and his 1st World Superbike championship, straight from the back of his t-shirt.
1. I’ve been chasing a fifth star for a long time.
2. I am the first Italian in SBK history to win the world title;
3. I am the first Italian to win a 250cc world championship with an Italian bike (Aprilia) and I wanted to be the first Italian to win in SBK with an Italian bike (Aprilia);
4. I have the hottest chick as my companion, and this helps! (His current companion Eleonora Pedron, ex-Miss Italia);
5. Enzo Ferrari was wrong, in a big way… (Referring to the F1 constructor, who famously said “When a driver becomes a father, he loses one second a lap”);
6. I will never stop thanking Ducati for their refusal to sign me in 2009;
7. Aprilia and Piaggio are my second family;
8. Becoming a father has given me exceptional motivation;
9. At well past 39 years of age I can still keep everyone else in line;
10. I owed it to all my fans and the Italians.
If reading from the back of Biaggi’s t-shirt isn’t your thing. Here are a few of the comments Biaggi made after the race.
“This is a grand day,” Biaggi said. “A day which I have greatly desired. I’ve often felt in past years like I hadn’t been placed in the proper conditions to be able to express my worth and to achieve the results that I know I deserve. This is one of the reasons that, at a certain point in my career, I chose this world, the SBK championship, and this is why I wanted to surround myself with the right people for this adventure – because racing isn’t just about speed, tyres and an engine. It is also about joy and having fun and with these guys, with this team, I feel at home.”
“I want to thank everyone: my team, Aprilia, Piaggio Group, the chairman. It has not been an easy season. Many riders have won races and if they had been just a bit more consistent, they would have been able to be more troublesome for us.”
“The greatest moments were the double victories at Monza and Misano. It is something very special to win in front of my fans. But it isn’t over yet – there is still one goal left – to ride my RSV4 to the manufacturer title. We’ll talk again in a week and it would be truly fantastic to close out this wonderful season with another championship”.