It was the Italian hymn of Aprilia riders that was heard at the main event of the first two weekends of the Daytona Speed Week, the biggest and most spectacular motorcycling event in the world.
The Aprilia Tuono 1000 R conquered victory in Daytona's prestigious 500km, disputed on the celebrated Floridian super-speedway (typically a NASCAR haunt) that included 105 laps in 3 hours, 18 minutes, and 25 seconds.
The only all-Italian team among the 44 motorcycles at the starting line, the Aprilia riders (Gianni De Matteis and Federico Aliverti, a journalist of the "Motociclismo" Italian magazine) completed a stupendous race. They went on to win on a track that is peerless in motorcycling competitions and is characterized by two super-elevated curves that are raced at full-speed, only to be followed by mixed terrain.
Thanks to an aggressive race and the advantage derived from the great experience acquired by the Noale house in the Endurance World Championship, the official Aprilia Tuono continually gained positions.
With 8 laps left to go, the twin 1000cc from Noale went after the race leaders, Ulrich-Acree, on their Suzuki 1000. The two motorcycles rode neck-in-neck for a while at over 250 km per hour, until the Italian bike gained the advantage and closed out the race with a margin of 12 seconds. Completing the fantastic performance from Aprilia was the conquest of the 3rd place podium by another Tuono, ridden by the Americans, Estock-Luke.
"To win at one of the temples of international motorcycling fills me with pride", affirmed Leo Mercanti, Aprilia Brand Manager. "At Daytona, the best of American motorcycling gather for the occasion and the race conditions, riding styles, and rules are far outside the norm of what Italian riders and designers are accustomed to. Yet we were able to compete at the highest of levels in such a different type of contest, demonstrating that great motorcycling know-how and passion know no borders. The victory and the 3rd place in Daytona are another notch in the belt to add to Aprilia's growth in the US, an ever-increasingly important market in the strategy of our brand's international diffusion."
The performance of Aliverti and De Matteis was particularly significant, because the Aprilia Tuono competed in a standard configuration, absolutely identical to the naked stock bike without any fairing, notwithstanding the extremely high speeds of the raised ramps.
Since its birth, the Aprilia Tuono has imposed itself as the quickest and most sporty naked motorcycle in the international market, repeatedly winning championships dedicated to the "naked" world and disputing other classified races such as the "Tourist Trophy" and the Macao GP with honor.
Such affirmation on the American speedway's theoretically "impossible" track (for the motorcycle without fairing and high steering) shows that the Tuono and its riders accomplished an exceptionally prestigious feat.