Jerez WorldSBK Test Notes: What To Watch Out For At The First Test Of 2020

Testing resumes today at Jerez for the WorldSBK class. At least, it will if the track dries out enough to make conditions usable. Heavy overnight rain has soaked the track, and more rain is expected over the next two days.

The WorldSBK field will be hoping for dry track time for a lot of reasons, not least because it will be the first time that the Honda CBR1000RR-R will be seen at a public test. Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam have ridden the bike at private tests already, the bike getting a run out at Aragon and Portimao, and reports were that the bike was very quick, but the rest of the WorldSBK field will want to see a direct comparison with the bike.

Photos of the Honda CBR1000RR-R have already been floating around social media. Here is one photo, with some of the engine visible.

Besides the Honda, there are plenty of other things to keep an eye. At Kawasaki, Jonathan Rea will be continuing his transition to a thumb brake, working on getting used to that feel. Alex Lowes, meanwhile, will be trying to unlearn some of the things he learned about braking on the Yamaha, and find the limits on the Kawasaki ZX10-RR. Corner entry has been Lowes' biggest problem so far.

Toprak Razgatlioglu, who took Lowes' place in the Pata Yamaha squad, will be working on solving rear grip issues, the bike wanting to spin up on corner exit. Michael van der Mark has a new crew chief in former World Supersport champion Andrew Pitt, and has been working with a new rear shock from Ohlins. He has also been testing fairings on the Pata Yamaha. American Garrett Gerloff will be working on his adaptation to a WorldSBK spec bike with the GRT Yamaha team, though conditions don't look like they will be helping.

At Ducati, Scott Redding will be adjusting to the WorldSBK spec electronics on the Panigale, though with his experience in MotoGP, that is not too much of an issue. Rear grip was a bigger problem for the Englishman. Teammate Chaz Davies is also focused on the rear of the bike, trying to get more weight on the rear to help with grip.

BMW faces a busy test, after Tom Sykes missed the Aragon test. Sykes has some catching up to do, while Eugene Laverty will be focusing on improving the power delivery on corner exit. Laverty was very happy with the chassis at previous tests, saying it was the best chassis he has ever ridden.

WorldSBK commentator and MotoMatters.com columnist Steve English is at the test, and will be posting updates on his Twitter feed and photographs on his Instagram account. You can also follow live timing of the test on the Jerez Circuit website.


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year: 
2020

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Comments

BMW engine - full fat SBK spec finally? How is it looking on the drag race relative to its peers?

Yamaha got some notable extra ponies this yr we know. The Duc is fairly well sorted now, and with data and base settings for the whole calendar. Honda? Let's see, very promising indeed.

Kawasaki may have their work cut out for them finally?

(Nice to see that beautiful compact V4 Aprilia back out there again)

The grid this year looks more competitive than the last few years which were basically a Jonathan Rea show. He has to contend with a fast Honda with AB aboard, Redding on a fast Duc, Toprak on the Yam with improved power, a resurgent Aprilia and Alex Lowes within his own team.

I can barely hold onto my britches.