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Eazi Grip

WorldSBK Test in Aragon

Day One

The six-time World Champion topped the times by just 0.016s ahead of nearest rival Toprak Razgatlioglu on the opening day of testing at MotorLand Aragon.

Despite colder conditions impacting on Day 1 of the Supported Test at MotorLand Aragon, Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) was able to lap faster than the race lap record for the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship venue as he topped the timesheets on Day 1 of testing. The six-time World Champion left it late to go top on Day 1 in the combined classification, beating his nearest rival by just 0.016s.

Three manufacturers in the top three

Rea claimed top spot on the opening day of action with a lap late in the third and final session of track action as he posted a 1’49.394s, to go under his own race lap record at MotorLand Aragon by two tenths of a second. Rea, who was hoping to start finetuning his ZX-10RR machine ahead of the Pirelli Aragon Round beat Razgatlioglu’s best time of 1’49.410s, set in FP2, in the final minutes of Day 1.

Like Rea, Razgatlioglu was under the race lap record set the six-time World Champion in last year’s Superpole Race, although the 2021 Champion’s day ended a few minutes early when he suffered a technical issue at Turn 15 in the closing stages of the session. Razgatlioglu used new electronics throughout the test as well as working on the race setup of his Yamaha YZF R1. Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) claimed third spot despite a crash on his Panigale V4 R machine at Turn 6 in FP3, ending the day six tenths down on Rea’s best time as his focus was on the start of the season in just a few days.

All five manufacturers feature in a tightly packed top ten

Garrett Gerloff (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) finished the day in fourth place as the American lapped around seven tenths slower than Rea, although Gerloff was fastest in the third sector of the lap. Gerloff’s R1 machine was fitted with the 2022 engine and a new exhaust seen on Razgatlioglu’s bike during testing as he claimed a top four finish on Day 1. Teammate Kohta Nozane ensured but GRT Yamaha riders were inside the top ten with eighth place, just four tenths off Gerloff’s pace on Day 1.

The American rider finished three tenths clear of Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) as Lowes had a couple of items to try throughout the test, on the suspension and chassis side, although did not want to change the bike too much due to colder conditions than are expected at the Aragon Round.

Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) claimed sixth spot as he, like teammate Razgatlioglu, did not improve in the final session of the day. His best time was a 1’50.433s, just over a second off Rea’s time but 0.010s away from Lowes. Loris Baz (Bonovo Action BMW) was the highest-placed BMW rider as he claimed a top seven finish on his M 1000 RR, with teammate Eugene Laverty in tenth. Laverty’s best time was a 1’50.600s as he worked on the rear grip of his machine.

All five manufacturers were inside the top ten as Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) went ninth fastest on his CBR1000RR-R machine, posting a best time of 1’50.586s as he prepares for his rookie WorldSBK campaign. Lecuona’s plan was to do as many laps as possible but cold conditions in the morning and a Turn 7 crash in FP3 meant his running was disrupted, although he was okay following the crash.

To note…

Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) was 11th, just 0.032s outside a place inside the top ten on his Panigale V4 R as he looked to test a new swingarm as well as different setup choices. Scott Redding (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) claimed 13thspot for the factory BMW squad, three tenths down on the fastest time record by Baz, the fastest BMW rider.

Last year’s breakthrough star, Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing) was 18thon the opening day of test with a time of 1’51.890s, over a tenth slower than debutant Roberto Tamburini (Yamaha Motoxracing WorldSBK Team) who received a late call-up to the 2022 Championship. Christophe Ponsson (Gil Motor Sport-Yamaha) was 19thfastest after he had a Turn 2 crash in FP3, with the Frenchman okay after the incident.

1. Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 1’49.394s

2. Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) +0.016s

3. Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +0.631s

4. Garrett Gerloff (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) +0.726s

5. Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) +1.029s

6. Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) +1.039s

7. Loris Baz (Bonovo Action BMW) +1.052s

8. Kohta Nozane (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) +1.126s

9. Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) +1.192s

10. Eugene Laverty (Bonovo Action BMW) +1.206s

11. Michael Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +1.238s

12. Eazi-Grip supported Philipp Oettl (Team Go Eleven) +1.319s

13. Eazi-Grip supported Scott Redding (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) +1.340s

14. Eazi-Grip supported Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) +1.757s

15. Eazi-Grip supported Ilia Mykhalchyk (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) +2.044s

Day Two

Jonathan Rea posted the best time as all five manufacturers finished inside the top ten on the final day of testing before racing starts.

The final day of the Supported Test at MotorLand Aragon came to a conclusion for the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship teams and riders with six-time Champion Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) topping the timesheets as the only rider to lap in the 1’48s bracket. On a day of competitive pace, four manufacturers were represented in the top five and all five were inside the top ten.

The competition is fierce: Four manufacturers in the top five

Rea’s best time from Day 2’s second session had looked like it was going to be enough to top the day, but he was able to improve again to a 1’48.714s to secure top spot on the second and final day of testing ahead of the Pirelli Aragon Round. He was three tenths clear of reigning Champion Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) in second place, whose late lap time of a 1’49.068s moved him into second place. Razgatlioglu yesterday was continuing to test more about the electronics on his Yamaha YZF R1 while Rea had a couple of items to test, although no big new components.

Razgatlioglu overhauled Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) to demote the Spanish rider into third place as Bautista looked to work on his Panigale V4 R machine with the Aragon Round in mind. Bautista’s best time was a 1’49.094s and he finished two tenths clear of American rider Garrett Gerloff (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) as Gerloff completed the top four as he tested new components previously tested by the Pata Yamaha squad, using the full 2022 bike for the first time. Loris Baz (Bonovo Action BMW) was the highest-placed BMW rider in fifth place, with four of 2022’s five manufacturers in the top five, as he posted a 1’49.383s in FP5; Baz the highest-placed rider who did not improve in the final session.

Seven riders within three tenths: A closely-matched field…

Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) was in sixth place with a time of 1’49.831s, 1.117s down on Rea’s pacesetting time but the Italian rider, heading into his second WorldSBK campaign, led a pack of seven riders within three tenths of each other. Locatelli’s compatriot, Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati), was seventh but just 0.032s behind Locatelli as he tried the new swingarm on his Ducati Panigale V4 R machine.

Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) was the fastest Honda rider out on track but there was nothing to separate him from teammate Xavi Vierge on the timesheets. Lecuona’s day was interrupted by a crash at Turn 2 in the second session of the day but he, like Vierge, was to focus on the upcoming Aragon Round; their first time racing at the venue in WorldSBK. Rookie Philipp Oettl (Team Goeleven) rounded out the top ten with a best time of 1’50.086s as he continued to show strong pace ahead of his rookie campaign.

Scott Redding (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) was just 0.018s outside the top ten as the British rider finished in 11th place. Redding’s day was interrupted by a crash at Turn 5 but he did get to try Pirelli’s new SCQ tyre on Day 2 of the test. Redding was just 0.008s clear of Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) as Lowes looked to complete more laps on his ZX-10RR without changing too much on the bike due to the colder conditions than the ones expected at the Aragon Round.

Hoping to move up the grid: Rounding out the top 15

Irishman Eugene Laverty (Bonovo Action BMW) claimed 13th place on his M 1000 RR machine despite a crash at Turn 9 in the second session, with the Irishman able to re-join the session. He was ahead of fellow BMW rider Ilya Mikhalchik (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team), who continues to stand in for the injured Michael van der Mark and will replace him for the Aragon Round. Mikhalchik’s best time was a 1’50.498s, just 0.052s away from Laverty. Rookie Roberto Tamburini (Yamaha Motoxracing WorldSBK Team), who received a late call-up for the 2022 campaign, rounded out the top 15 as he posted a best time of 1’50.656s, 1.942s away from Rea’s pacesetting time.

1. Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 1’48.714s

2. Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) +0.354s

3. Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +0.380s

4. Garrett Gerloff (GYRT GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) +0.521s

5. Loris Baz (Bonovo Action BMW) +0.669s

6. Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) +1.117s

7. Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +1.149s

8. Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) +1.257s

9. Xavi Vierge (Team HRC) +1.296s

10. Eazi-Grip supported Philipp Oettl (Team Goeleven) +1.372s

11. Eazi-Grip supported Scott Redding (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) +1.390s

14. Eazi-Grip supported Ilia Mykhalchyk (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) +1.784s

18. Eazi-Grip supported Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) +2.324s

Posted on Tuesday, April 5th, 2022 in News

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