Melandri announces he will retire when the season ends

The Italian rider will bid farewell to the competition after 22 years in the elite where he became the 250cc world champion with Aprilia in 2002.

Marco Melandri announced on Tuesday at a press conference held in Milan his retirement from motorcycling at the end of this season. After 22 years in the elite, the Italian driver has decided to end his professional career. This campaign was competing in the Superbike World Championship with the Yamaha GRT Team WorldSBK.

"The decision to retire has been very difficult for me. I had been thinking about it for some time and, before the Imola race, I finally decided to go to end of the season 2019. I'm still competitive and I think it's better to stop at this point, while I'm still enjoying the races, instead of waiting until the enjoyment and the results are more difficult to achieve, "Melandri explains in a statement collected by the official website of Superbike.

The Ravenna debutó in the year 1997 in the Motorcycling World at the age of 15 years and 24 days in the 125cc category. In that category he added seven victories, 17 podiums, six poles and a second place in the world in 1999 in 29 races. With the new millennium, he ascended to the 250cc category where he achieved his great success: proclaiming himself world champion in 2002. In the intermediate category he achieved a total of ten victories, 25 podiums and three poles in 47 races. In 2003 he made his debut in MotoGP where he raced in 139 races. In the premier class he scored five victories and 20 podiums; in addition to another runner-up in 2005.

After a few years in which he was away from the top positions, in 2011 decided to change the air and went to the Superbike World. There he found the lost competitiveness again. In fact, in 2012 he had it face to return to be world champion but a fall in the penultimate round of the season left him without options. In Superbike has achieved 22 victories, 75 podiums and four poles in the 175 races he has played.

The Italian will be fired the weekend of 24 to 26 October at the circuit of Losail, in Qatar, at the age of 37 .

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