(born August 7, 1982 in Ravenna
) is a motorcycle road racer
currently racing for the Yamaha World Superbike Team. Melandri is also a former 250cc
World Champion in 2002. Melandri currently lives 2 miles away from the famous race track, Donington Park
He was introduced to racing by a former rider Loris Reggiani
at the age of six. He came through the ranks from minibikes, motocross and then the Italian and European 125cc championship.
In 1997, Melandri won the Italian 125cc championship, also finishing 4th in European 125cc championship. In addition to his European success, he made his debut in 125cc world championship
, Czech Republic
as a wild card rider.
After impressing in Italian and European championship in 1997, Melandri finally got his chance to compete in 1998 125cc world championship
as a regular. He rode Honda
125cc bike under Benetton Honda Team
. He went on to impress many as he earned his first podium in the fourth race of the season, where he finished second in his home Grand Prix at Mugello
. His brilliant debut season continued when he won his first grand prix at Assen TT
. He won this race at the age of 15 years and 324 days which made him the youngest ever Grand Prix winner, at the time. Overall, he won two Grand Prix in his debut season and therefore he finished the season at 3rd position in overall standings behind champion Kazuto Sakata
and... Read More