The FIM today released the provisional 2018 WorldSBK version. Just as last year, the schedule contains thirteen rounds, spread out from February to late October. Two circuits visited in 2017 are out, Jerez and the Lausitzring, while Brno makes a return to the WorldSBK schedule, and a brand new circuit in the west of Argentina, near the border with Chile.
It has been a busy day test on the Iberian peninsula. A day after the Portuguese round of WorldSBK, a large part of the Superbike grid stayed on for a day of testing. After an indomitable performance during the weekend, Jonathan Rea ended the day as fastest, the Kawasaki man finishing nearly four tenths ahead of the Ducati of Chaz Davies, while Marco Melandri was third quickest.
With Tom Sykes absent due to injury, Toprak Razgatlioglu, Superstock 1000 rider and protégé of Kenan Sofuoglu, took over the reigns of the Yorkshireman's Kawasaki ZX-10RR. Razgatlioglu was as impressive on a Superbike as he has been on a Superstock machine, posting a string of fast laps and ending the day in fourth, just under a second slower than reigning world champion Jonathan Rea.
Notes from Portimao from our man on the ground:
WorldSBK standings after race 2 in Portugal:
Press releases from the teams and series organizer after Sunday's races in Portugal:
For the last race of the weekend, World Superbike race two, the wind was lower than it has been most of the weekend. Twenty laps would determine the winner with the reverse grid putting some interesting names at the front. Stefan Bradl was unable to start due to a wrist injury from his crash yesterday.
WorldSSP championship standings after the Portuguese race at Portimao:
The World Supersport race was high noon in Portugal with ten riders not competing the race.
Notes on WorldSBK race 1 from our man on the ground at Portimao:
WorldSBK standings after the first race at Portimao: