Benelli Returns!

Brent Avis
by Brent Avis
In 2001, Benelli celebrates its 90th birthday and it is nearly ready for areturn to competition with an official Tornado 900 in the World Superbike Championship.

After two World Championship titles and three wins at the Tourist Trophyobtained some years ago, after the presentation of the Tornado 900 to thepress of all over the world and the first dynamic appearance at the Isleof Man last year, in front of thousand of enthusiastic fans, now Benelli ismaking final tests in order to complete the Tornadopreparation...

Peter Goddard, the 37-year-old Australian rider, former Endurance WorldChampion and third at the 8 Hours of Suzuka last year, is livingnow in the San Marino Republic at disposition of the Benelli Sport Team, ready to take the Tornado 900 into serious competition.

The most challenging step for the bike started the last 23rd and 24th ofApril at the Mugello circuit in Italy. The first raining day limited theestablished program, but the sunny second day permitted Goddard to test fora long time, trying to sort out frame and motor parts.

The tests revealed a general behavior that was deemed absolutely satisfactory and now Benelli canstart the trial of a new engine with more performance than the production version.

The official Tornado foray into the 2001 World Superbike Championship isfixed on June 24, in occasion of the next San Marino Gran Prix, on the track ofMisano Adriatico.

It should be a difficult debut, but Benelli hopes it can satisfy the largeinterest that the public has shown in the project.

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