Eazi Grip

Clashes and fight for Team Go Eleven at Portimao WorldSBK

Philipp finishes P12 on day one with only two tenths to fifth place

A tight, or rather very tight, day in terms of gaps between WorldSBK riders at the Autodromo International do Algarve; from fourth to fourteenth, all within half a second, with several protagonists showing a fast and similar race pace, including the Go Eleven German rider. When the gaps are narrow, on such a technical and spectacular track, qualifying is even more important; starting in the first three rows will be the target of tomorrow morning.

FP 1 saw the “usual” work of Team Go Eleven, race tyre, which here in Portimao will be the SC0, on track until 20 minutes from the end, small set-up change and riding again until the end of the session, focusing the work on the race pace and maintaining used tyre. Top Ten, with some opponents who tested the SCX, significantly improving their references.

Free Practice 1: 
P 1   G. Gerloff   1.40.763
P 2   A. Bautista  + 0.433
P 3   J. Rea    + 0.631

P 10   P. Oettl   + 1.021

For FP 2, the warm Portimao pushed the asphalt temperatures close to 45 degrees; Philipp starts the session with new tyres, to do a long run again, so as to collect as much data as possible in view of the long races. All laps timed between 41.8 and 42.1; very very constant, with the German rider saying he was happy and satisfied also in terms of feeling and responses from the Ducati Panigale V4-R. In the final minutes Oettl was able to take advantage of a new set of tyres, immediately improving half a second, placing himself close to the top ten, two tenths from fifth place. The track is one of the most difficult in the world, but the WorldSBK riders have all reached their limit very close to each other, and, after such a closed and restricted Friday, it is difficult to understand what to expect from tomorrow’s race and create expectations.

Free Practice 2:  
P 1    A. Bautista     1.40.476
P 2    M. Rinaldi   + 0.351
P 3    D. Petrucci     + 0.542

P 12   P. Oettl   + 0.910

For Saturday, the Go Eleven technicians will have to work and understand how to improve the third sector, one of the most technical; today the German rider was taking too much gap, being one of the slowest on the track in those few corners. With just a couple of tenths found, we could aim for an excellent performance, so it is essential not to leave anything to chance and carefully analyze the areas in which there is room for improvement!

Philipp Oettl (Rider):

“Today we had a solid day, quite similar to Aragon! Maybe we are a more close together, so we have to work, mainly in our third sector. Race pace wasn’t too bad, but we have areas where to improve. We have been all the session inside the Top Ten, then we finished a bit outside it, I am quite ok on the bike. Portimao is a really challenging track, it’s amazing to ride here, but it has some really hard sectors. I am quite sure we can find a way in sector three, so let’s keep working!”

Philipp ends up close to the top 10 with fight, comeback and overtakes

Positive Saturday, full of battles and overtaking for Philipp Oettl and Team Go Eleven; fast in the morning and author of a good qualifying, the German rider took eleventh position at the end of Race 1, defending himself from the come back of Petrucci and Axel Bassani. Solid race and comeback, but tomorrow the goal is the Top Ten!

In FP 3 the strategy involves the first part of the session with a used on Friday race tyre, and then moving on to the time-attack, to prepare for qualifying. Third time, a really clean and precise lap, which brought Philipp less than half a second from the track record. Third sector improved, but a further step is still needed for the second part of the track.

Free Practice 3: 
P 1   A. Bautista   1.39.811
P 2   M. Rinaldi   + 0.296
P 3   P. Oettl    + 0.357

In Superpole Philipp goes on track excited and determined, immediately finding a good lap in the low 40s, which places him in the top six. On the second attempt, unfortunately he improved his reference by a few cents, but the lap was canceled due to a yellow flag. The first laptime turns to be valid again, placing the Ducati number 5 in tenth place, thus starting from the fourth row. Third, in Race 1, due to Locatelli starting from the last row. Good laptime, position in the center of the group and excellent opportunity over the distance of 18 laps.

P 1    J. Rea    1.39.620
P 2    A. Lowes   + 0.142
P 3    A. Locatelli    + 0.252

P 10   P. Oettl   + 0.642

In Race 1 Philipp got off to a good start, then found himself closed up at Turn 4, where he lost four positions. In the first seven or eight laps he waits, saving the rear tyre, then from mid-race onwards the comeback begins; he overtakes Redding, takes Vierge and Axel, attacking both with spectacular overtaking in the first sector. On the penultimate lap a small mistake exiting the last corner leads to the Honda Spaniard overtaking, who then finishes just a few in front of the Go Eleven rider. Good defence against Petrucci and Bassani, at the end, gaining five points. A solid and positive race, first independent Ducati at the finish line, the Top Ten was within reach, but it will be the first goal on Portuguese Sunday.

Race 1:  
P 1    A. Bautista    33’42.916
P 2    T. Razgatlioglu    + 2.098
P 3    J. Rea   + 6.790

P 11    P. Oettl   + 21.723

For tomorrow we will need an excellent first lap, to improve the result obtained today, starting from the left side of the track, in tenth position, the one obtained in Superpole. The feeling and speed are there, Philipp feels good riding Portimao, but a further step is still needed!

Philipp Oettl (Rider):

“The Qualifying today was really good, it was the base for our strong Race 1! I did a great start, I overtook Lecuona there, then I also got over Bassani, quite easily overtaking him in turn 1. It was necessary cause I had more rhythm, so I tried to stay with Locatelli, but he was a bit faster than me, he was more consistent for all the laps. At one point my tyre dropped a lot, but I could manage my 6th position. We did a good job overall, I hope we can do another small step forward tomorrow, but at the moment I am really happy to be back in top positions!”

Denis Sacchetti (Team Manager):

“What a pleasure to be back fighting in the top five positions! Today Philipp started well and immediately overtook Bassani without wasting time… He was very good and it was a shame to have lost the Top Independent to Petrucci, but today Danilo was very strong and he deserved it! Let’s relaunch the challenge tomorrow, but for today I am satisfied with everyone’s work, we have overcome a moment in which the results were struggling to arrive, we have always believed in it, and today the efforts have been rewarded. A small step tomorrow, and we can confirm our potential!”

Two top ten results on Sunday at WorldSBK Portimao for Team Go Eleven

How much battle on Portuguese Sunday for Philipp Oettl and Team Go Eleven! The gap from the first eight positions was significantly reduced compared to yesterday, exciting overtaking and brakings, at turn five, one, thirteen! Another solid weekend in the books, here in Portimao the German rider confirmed the positive trend started since the summer break by constantly placing himself within the top ten positions; Aragon, Portimao…sweet last dance in Jerez?

In the Warm Up Philipp took to the track with the SC0, carrying out a final test to make the best tyre choice for the Superpole Race. Eighth time, constant and fast race, despite the traffic faced on some laps. A positive aspect are the improvements in the final sectors of Portimao, in which Philipp managed to close the gap on the riders fighting with him.

Warm Up: 
P 1   T. Razgatlioglu   1.39.726
P 2   J. Rea   + 0.647
P 3   M. Rinaldi    + 0.907

P 8   P. Oettl   + 1.149

Before the Superpole Race, the team and rider choose the rear tyre together; SCX, the softest available, in the hope that there won’t be a big drop at the end of the race. Oettl made a strong start, immediately entering the fight for the Top Ten. He fought in the group with Vierge and Gerloff, catching up to Bassani and Petrucci. He overtakes the latter, defending himself like a lion from the American. The two even touched twice at the last corner, managing to stay upright and lose a few tenths. Real race, when Vierge also gets involved, so much so that positions are constantly exchanged. The group manages to catch Axel, passing him at the end, but unfortunately Philipp loses at the finish line with Vierge for ninth position. Once again very close, but the improvement on the grid slips away by just a few cents.

Superpole Race:  
P 1    A. Bautista    16’43.715
P 2    T. Razgatlioglu   + 0.142
P 3    A. Locatelli  + 4.024

P 10   P. Oettl   + 11.230

In Race 2 Philipp got off to a good start, but then found himself all the way inside in turn one and turn four, losing many positions. Thanks to the contact between Rea, Vierge and Scott he recovers, then also overtaking Baldassarri and Ray in the first laps. Really fast, demonic race pace for the Ducati number 5, which at 40 highs, 41 lows overtakes Axel, chasing the group fighting for the Top 6. He closes by up to seven, eight tenths, but in the final laps he needs to slow down the pace slightly. Good performance, a solid and fast race with a small gap to the first, around twelve seconds. The German rider fought, recovered, defended himself and gave his all, not being discouraged after a complicated first lap!

Race 2:  
P 1    A. Bautista    33’43.228
P 2    T. Razgatlioglu   + 0.126
P 3    M. Rinaldi   + 1.764

P 9  P. Oettl   + 12.253

The trail of results that began in Magny-Cours is excellent, fast and determined races, always in the top ten, with exploits close to the Top 5! From the summer break Philipp has returned recharged and motivated, and the bike seems to follow him best on the Iberian tracks. One Round is missing from the season finale, Jerez, 27-29 October, where this 2023 began in January; in Andalusia Philipp has won and signed Pole Position in the past, the goal is the sweet ending we all want!

Philipp Oettl (Rider):

“I am really happy with the races today, we fought inside the Top Ten and we were really close to the front guys, it’s a solid weekend overall, all the team and me worked really well, we never had problems. Today the win was 12 seconds ahead, the level here is unbelievable. I can’t wait to be in Jerez, let’s see what we can do there; it will be a completely different feeling compared to the beginning of the season, I really want to have a good season finale!”

Denis Sacchetti (Team Manager):

“The step forward made in Aragon was largely confirmed, Philipp overtook and battled practically throughout the race, he was very clever in battle and what makes us happy is the very small gap from the winner. Considering that on the first lap we lost positions and seconds, I think this is even more positive. We want to finish the World Championship in Jerez with good memories and I think we will come there ready to have fun. Philipp loves that circuit, the conditions are good!”

Posted on Monday, October 2nd, 2023 in News

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