WSBK – WSBK 2015: assessment of the first tests in Spain – Ducati riders ahead of Kawasaki

WSBK 2015: assessment of the first tests in Spain

WSBK - WSBK 2015: assessment of the first tests in Spain - Ducati riders ahead of Kawasaki

The two official WSBK teams Ducati and Kawasaki rode together on Monday and Tuesday on the main track in Aragon, Spain. The private Ducati Althea team was also filming these two days, but a little further south, in Valencia. Site takes stock

Ducati riders ahead of Kawasaki

The first winter testing of the new World Superbike season ended last night. Leading at the end of the first day (Monday), Davide Giugliano started from Motorland Aragon with the best time, unofficial and not comparable with those registered at the start of last season..

The Italian n ° 34 of the official Ducati team and his four little comrades Chaz Davies, Tom Sykes, Jonathan Rea and Kenan Sofuoglu indeed rode on the "MotoGP" version of the Spanish circuit and not on the one usually used by Superbikes (FIA standards).

"The circuit is used in its FIM configuration", specified on Monday evening the organizers of the WSBK:"5.078 km long and including the long left turn leading to the start / finish straight line".

By dodging the 250 m of the particularly slow hairpin at the end of the course, the official Ducati and Kawasaki riders were able to turn more than six seconds below the official record held for two years by Tom Sykes with his Superpole in 1’56.339 (read ).

Giugliano’s best time (1’50.2) can be compared with the absolute record of the FIM track set by (1’47.187). Three – small – seconds therefore separate the Italian driver and his 1199 Panigale R from the double Spanish champion and his prototype Honda RC213V. Not bad is not it ?

"Driving fast in Aragon is very important for me because it is a track that has always caused me problems", Davide analyzes."We still have to work on the race pace which is the most critical aspect for me", he readily admits.

Hyper swift in qualifying, the n ° 34 has too rarely transformed his practice into a race this year. The readers of Site – who, as everyone knows, have a little more RAM than others – for example remember his …

While he had started at the head of the second row of the Spanish grid, Giugliano had planted himself at the very end of the, narrowly failing to mow down Jonathan Rea’s Fireblade – then third! – and finally finished in a disappointing eighth place.

"Already during these two days of testing we saw that I could constantly turn fast with worn tires", assured" DG "last night, delighted with the 2015 version of his factory machine, closer to the 1199 Panigale R" on the market "than his Panigale 2014 because of the new regulations (read).

First Ducati rider in the 2014 WSBK ranking, Chaz Davies was first of all delighted to be back with his team and his bike for a second season in a row, which had never happened to him: spent on various GP Aprilia in the early 2000s. , the Welsh racer on Yamaha, Kawasaki and Aprilia in AMA SBK, Daytona 675 and R6 in WSSP and Aprilia, BMW then Ducati in WSBK…

"The approach with the new bike was very easy because the sensations are very similar to those I had on the bike I rode in Qatar", notes" CD "who took advantage of the two days to"perform some tests to confirm some of the solutions used during this season".

On the other hand, "the new components introduced on the 2015 motorcycle gave us very clear and positive answers. New electronics work well and new motor behaves smoothly and linearly".

Enough to ensure an excellent tempo, just a tenth of a second behind his Italian teammate … and almost a second faster than his British compatriots Tom Sykes and Jonathan Rea !

Official Kawasaki rider for five seasons – and for the next two years too! – Tom Sykes admitted last night that he had not found the perfect settings on his new Ninja ZX-10R. His best time of 1’51.1 proves it…

"There are a lot of changes in the 2015 technical regulations and I knew we were going to have a lot of work as soon as I left the pit lane", relativizes Tom who had received"a long list of things to see and several requests from KHI"(the Kawasaki Heavy Industries factory, Editor’s note).

"I also worked on my riding and on the new configuration because in a way, we started from zero during this test", even estimates the n ° 66 whose only objective next year will be to recover" his "plate of n ° 1, from now on !

Despite the rain on Monday morning, the former "Number One" of the discipline completed more than 100 laps in two days in order to detect "what we need to go faster". His new teammate completed nearly 80, almost as quickly…

Like his comrade Chaz Davies, Jonathan Rea was also innovating as he took the controls of a motorcycle without the winged crest (Honda): a great first in his professional career !

Deprived of official comments until the end of the year – but no tests, phew! -, "JR" nonetheless reported via social networks that his first impressions of the Ninja were very positive and that he really appreciated his new job..

Its new chief engineer, Pere Riba, is equally satisfied: "he is a very good pilot (he finished 3rd in, Editor’s note!), he is very professional and the information he gives us is very good".

"Jonathan did almost 40 laps each day", reports the Spanish mechanic."It was a first test and it was therefore necessary to find its basic settings. We spent a lot of time in the box making changes, but it was positive".

By completing his best lap a tenth of a second slower than the experienced Tom, Johnny proves that he already has a green thumb … For the record, it was he who was currently passing medical tests for the account. by Kawasaki.

Logically, n ° 65 should be declared – very – "good for the service"! Like Giugliano and Davies, Rea and Sykes must get back in the saddle next week, between 24 and 28 November, on the circuit of Jerez this time..

"Aragon and Jerez are two very different tracks", analyzes Ernesto Marinelli, director of the Superbike project at Ducati:"it will be important to consolidate the information and results gathered here when we arrive in Jerez next week, in order to approach the recovery in January with confidence".

Superbike Aragon tests – Monday, November 18, 2014

  1. Davide Giugliano – Ducati SBK: 1’51.3

  2. Chaz Davies – Ducati SBK: 1’51.3

  3. Tom Sykes – Kawasaki SBK: 1’52.2

  4. Jonathan Rea – Kawasaki SBK: 1’52.7

  5. Kenan Sofuoglu – Kawasaki SSP: 1’55.6

Superbike Aragon tests – Tuesday 19 November 2014

  1. Davide Giugliano – Ducati SBK: 1’50.2

  2. Chaz Davies – Ducati SBK: 1’50.3

  3. Tom Sykes – Kawasaki SBK: 1’51.1

  4. Jonathan Rea – Kawasaki SBK: 1’51.2

  5. Kenan Sofuoglu – Kawasaki SSP: 1’54.3

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