These just in:
The final day of Jerez testing brought the only sunshine available out to play for a handful of hours before more rain meant that most teams remained in their garages with a couple of hours to go. With Honda on top of day one, it was Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) and Kawasaki who were on top after doing 19 laps across the two days. Behind him, 2019 rival Toprak Razgatlioglu (PATA YAMAHA WORLDSBK OFFICIAL TEAM) and Scott Redding (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati), making it three manufacturers inside the top three.
There was very little track action across both days for the Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK outfit, as they vowed to keep their reigning WorldSBK Champion Jonathan Rea in the box for the entirety of day one, before he ventured out on day two. With little to try because he already knows the ZX-10RR so comprehensively, new teammate Alex Lowes did more work. The WorldSBK race winner experimented with launch control settings and wasn’t worried about the lack of dry time, as he was fast in testing in years gone by but then got to the first round and it had been a different story. Heading to Portugal, Rea is on top and Lowes is fourth.
Two-time race winner Toprak Razgatlioglu was in fine form across the test and despite suffering a Turn 1 crash on Wednesday, he bounced back to lead the way for the majority of the second day. However, once Jonathan Rea had gone out, Razgatlioglu was pushed back to second, although just over two tenths behind the Ulsterman. Michael van der Mark (PATA YAMAHA WORLDSBK OFFICIAL TEAM) joined his teammate at the sharp end and completed the top five, 1.7s behind Rea.
Making it three manufacturers inside the top three, Scott Redding (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) took his Ducati Panigale V4 R around the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto track. Having raced at the track more than most of his competitors from his MotoGP™ paddock days, the 27-year-old British ace had a good run at a circuit he knows well in order to learn the WorldSBK-spec of the V4 R’s intricacies. Chaz Davies (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) had a tough test and was 15th at the end of it all, crashing twice on the first day and completing less than 30 laps on day two.
Day one saw the highly awaited first public appearance of the all-new Honda CBR1000RR-R and it ended the day on top of the WorldSBK pile in the hands of Leon Haslam (HRC Team). On Thursday, the bike couldn’t quite replicate the position, but it was a good indicator of what the bike was capable of in drying conditions. The ‘Pocket Rocket’ finished in sixth come the end of play and hailed the support of HRC, giving him the confidence to achieve great things. For Bautista, the objective is still to find a good base setting and to learn the technicalities of an in-line four-cylinder motorcycle, something he has never ridden before. Bautista ended day two in eighth.
In seventh place was the first of the Independent riders and Loris Baz (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha). The 26-year-old WorldSBK race winner was right in the mix across the two days of testing, testing with the new 2020 Yamaha YZF R1. The wet weather running was confirmation that the team have improved the set-up of the bike in general, whilst they also practiced race starts and refined their electronics. Along with Baz in the top ten were other Independent riders were Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Team GOELEVEN) and Federico Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Junior Team), the latter of which suffered two crashes.
Outside the top ten was Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) in eleventh, as the BMW squad didn’t try too much during the second day. Combined with teammate Eugene Laverty, the two did 65 laps in total across the second day with a primary focus on Laverty, who hailed the chassis but has engine desires in order to move forward. With two chassis to test, the Shaun Muir Racing team will be busy with more development at Portimao; ‘Norge’ was 18th.
ORELAC Racing VERDNATURA were up in 12th place with WorldSBK rookie Maximilian Scheib, who quietly impressed around the WorldSBK paddock at Jerez. The Chilean rider’s main aim was to familiarise his way with the ZX-10RR, whilst placing fourth out of the Independent riders. Third on day one, it was 13th for Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Junior Team) on day two, whilst Sandro Cortese (Barni Racing Team) was 14th on his deputising duty. The German rider, who liked the feeling from his Ducati Panigale V4 R, is still without a ride on the 2020 grid. Sylvain Barrier (Brixx Performance) was 16th on his Ducati, ahead of Leandro Mercado (Motocorsa Racing).
WorldSBK Jerez Test Day Two Unofficial Times:
1.) Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 1’40.983 (19 laps)
2.) Toprak Razgatlioglu (PATA YAMAHA WORLDSBK OFFICIAL TEAM) +0.231 (42 laps)
3.) Scott Redding (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) +0.424 (43 laps)
4.) Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) +0.659 (44 laps)
5.) Michael van der Mark (PATA YAMAHA WORLDSBK OFFICIAL TEAM) +1.724 (43 laps)
6.) Leon Haslam (HRC Team) +1.814 (32 laps)
World Superbike | 2020 | Test | Spain | Jerez (Jan) | Thursday 23 January 2020
Two days of testing conclude at Jerez de la Frontera for Aruba.it Racing – Ducati with Redding and Davies in 3rd and 15th position respectively
The Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team archived the first tests of the 2020 WorldSBK season at the Jerez – Angel Nieto Circuit (Spain). After a first day conditioned by the incessant rain that made the track conditions tricky, causing many crashes, on the second day of activity Scott Redding and Chaz Davies managed to put together a good number of laps – in almost dry track conditions – obtaining important data to improve the feeling with their Ducati Panigale V4 R.
Scott Redding, protagonist of a convincing Day-1 (44 laps, P4) lapped with great consistency also in the second day of testing (43 laps completed) finishing with the third quickest time (1’41.407), 4 tenths of a second off Rea (Kawasaki).
A crash after two laps forced Chaz Davies to skip the first day of activity. The Welshman returned on track today completing 27 laps but was unable to find the ideal conditions to push at the maximum (P15, 1’44.276).
Chaz Davies, Scott Redding and the Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team will move tomorrow morning to Portugal where two more days of testing are scheduled on Sunday and Monday at the Algarve International Circuit (Portimão).
Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #45) – 1’41.407 (3rd)
“My first goal is to get to know the bike well, to get to know the team, to understand the tyre behaviour in the best possible way, to work to create a solid base. If I have to be honest, I am very satisfied with what we have done so far. I have had a good feeling during these two days even if, obviously, the weather has not helped us. I still feel comfortable in both wet and dry conditions. There are some areas where we need to improve but the balance of these days is very positive”.
Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #7) – 1’44.267 (15th)
“We worked on the bike and that didn’t allow me to focus on performance. I can’t hide the fact that we have encountered some issues in these tests but I am sure we can be much more competitive in the next two days at Portimao. The base to work on, obviously, is very good but we need to put together many laps. That is why I hope to have four days in dry conditions between the tests in Portugal and Australia. This would allow us to arrive in the best conditions in the first race of the season”.
Team HRC completes a two-day test at Jerez in mixed conditions
Team HRC has completed an important two-day test at the Jerez de la Frontera circuit in Spain with its official riders Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam.
The testing session got underway on Wednesday morning, although all teams in attendance were significantly hindered by wet weather as they started to make inroads into their intense work programmes. During this, their first 2020 outing aboard the new CBR1000RR-R, the HRC riders largely focused on set-up work together with their technicians. By the end of the first wet day, Leon Haslam had set the fastest time, a 1’52.149, with Alvaro Bautista lying tenth with his 1’54.824.
On Thursday the weather offered some almost dry track-time that allowed for the use of slick tyres, despite air temperatures never rising above 14° C and some damp patches remaining around the track. Both riders continued their set-up work across all areas of the bike. Rain started again around 16:00, putting a premature end to the testing session. On this second day, Leon and Alvaro set the 6th (in 1’42.797) and 8th (1’43.579) fastest lap times respectively.
The Team HRC will now travel to Portugal where they will take part in a second two-day test at the Algarve International Circuit on Sunday 26 and Monday 27 January.
Leon Haslam 91
“Tricky weather conditions of course but every time we made an exit, we were testing something different, getting through the list of things we wanted to try. Our priority is to get through the many items we need to test, so we need dry conditions for a lot of that, but it didn’t hurt to complete some laps in the wet on Wednesday. Today the track was never fully dry, but all in all we did what we needed to do. We put together something we wanted to try at the end of the day but then it started to rain again so we’ll keep working on that in Portimão. Hopefully we will have some better weather conditions there. It’s exciting to have a competitive team-mate like Alvaro, it looks like we both have a similar understanding of the bike. Having the backing of Honda and HRC is so important; it’s a new bike and so a lot of development goes into that. The team also really wants to succeed, and that confidence really inspires me to do my best.”
Alvaro Bautista 19
“Wet, mixed testing days like this are never easy, especially for us with a brand-new bike as we have development to do. We need more mileage in the dry obviously, but we have been able to collect some useful data at least. We start with no references so time will tell where exactly we need to focus our efforts on the bike. I am working to adapt my riding style, having ridden different machines in the recent past. Today the conditions were a bit better than yesterday, albeit not completely dry, and we had the chance to use the slick tyres. My impressions were good, I think we have a lot of potential and that we need to work to fine tune everything. Basically, the initial goal in this early phase of the project is to push hard with the set-up so that we can perform at the top level as soon as possible.”