Michel Fabrizio was delighted after picking up his and Alstare Suzuki's first podium of the season at Monza on Sunday.

The historic circuit was the scene of Fabrizio's maiden World Superbike victory two years ago, and the Italian was on top form again this weekend. Fabrizio stayed out of trouble in both races, finishing a solid fifth in race one before a ride through penalty for Max Biaggi promoted him into the top three in race two.

While disappointed for his fellow countryman, Fabrizio was delighted that the Alstare Suzuki team's hard work had finally been rewarded.

“I am very happy with my podium this afternoon, especially as I was in fourth for a long time at the end and that’s where I thought I’d end up. When Biaggi had to do a ride-through penalty, that moved the two Yamahas and me up a place. Racing is like that – sometimes you win and sometimes you lose.”

“Even though I didn’t get on the podium in Race 1, I am happy that I set the fastest lap of the race – especially as Biaggi’s bike was nearly seven kph faster. I think our team is working really well and I am very pleased with how things are going. I am very happy to get my first podium of the season and hopefully there will be more to come.”

The 26-year-old admitted he made life difficult for himself on Sunday with two poor starts, and thinks that is something he needs to improve if he is to maintain this form in the United States in three weeks time.

“It was a bit of a shame that I didn’t make better starts in the two races today and that’s something that I will have to work on. At the moment I am probably giving myself too much work to do in the first part of the race and this series is so competitive that once you give way an advantage, it’s very hard to get it back.