Thunder getting hot


RACE champion Andrew Nelson

The Canadian Thunder bit of the 2008 Parts Canada Superbike series is certainly hotting up. First KTM announced it was planning to enter the fray, and now Ducati says they’ll be entering a team using NCR-modified bikes, entered by NCR Canada under the leadership of Joe Ippoliti.

The Italian bike and tuning company comes complete with a European rider, to wit, Valter Bartolini, 2007 European Supertwins champ.

He’ll team up with local (very) fast guy Andrew Nelson of Kars, Ont., who is continuing a family tradition on the track (his father Richard was a top-ranked pro 20 years ago). Bartolini won’t be the only rider on the team with hardware to his name, as Nelson took the RACE 600 title last season and was second in RACE Superbike.

The two will ride Ducati 848s, which received a spectacular North American introduction when Larry Pegram finished third (pending protest of Josh Hayes’s disqualification) in the Daytona 200.

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