Portimao, Portugal

2019 Portimao World Superbike FP1 Result: The Summer Break Ends Here

Returning to racing after a long summer break, Jonathan Rea and Alvaro Bautista returned to the top of the sheets as their fight continued anew, separated by under a tenth of a second at the end of the session. The top eleven were well within a second of Rea's best time, making the most of the experience from the recent test here. 

Results:

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2019 WorldSBK Testing Round Up: Panigale A Work In Progress, Rea Dominant, Lowes One To Watch

Testing paints a picture but it’s never a complete one. It shows only what the artist wants you to see with their work in progress. The winter is a time to work through your program and do it at your own pace. This year that has been even more the case. With new bikes for Ducati and BMW there is plenty of change in the air of the World Superbike paddock, and after eight days of testing there are arguably more questions than answers.

The Ducati V4R was billed as the weapon to finally end Jonathan Rea’s dominance of WorldSBK. It was a MotoGP-derived bike that didn’t pull punches. It was one that broke cover over 12 months before its competitive debut. It was expected to be a honed creation from the outset. It was expected to be seamless. But instead, Ducati’s introduction of their new machine has run aground this winter.

Circumstances have worked against Ducati. Four days of testing in November were ruined by bad weather in Aragon, and then a bad track surface at Jerez that would need to be replaced. With a brand new surface at Jerez, it was dirty for the opening test of 2019. It took time to clean and it was almost impossible for riders to do long distance stints without excessive tire wear. Coming to Portimao it was hoped that Ducati could get some information on the new bike.

Hampering progress

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2019 Portimao WorldSBK Test Monday Times: Rea Dominates Portimao Test

Jonathan Rea leaves the Portimao test having stamped his authority on the test at at the end of the day. The KRT Kawasaki rider ended the test nearly a second quicker than second-place rider Alex Lowes on the Pata Yamaha. Alvaro Bautista set the third fastest time on the Aruba.it Ducati Panigale V4R, a tenth behind Alex Lowes, while Rea's KRT teammate Leon Haslam was fourth.

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2019 Portimao WorldSBK Test Sunday Times: Rea Rules Day 1

Jonathan Rea topped the timesheets on the first day of the second WorldSBK test, currently underway at Portimao in Portugal. The Kawasaki rider finished four tenths faster than Alex Lowes on the Pata Yamaha, who in turn just edged ahead of WorldSBK newcomer Alvaro Bautista on the Aruba.it Ducati Panigale V4R.

Toprak Razgatlioglu was not far behind Bautista, the young Turkish rider five thousandths slower than the Spaniard on the Puccetti Kawasaki. Tom Sykes' first public timed appearance on the SMR BMW S1000RR backed up the impression of speed he had made during his untimed appearance at Jerez, ending the day in fifth, a tenth behind Razgatlioglu and a few hundredths ahead of Leon Haslam on the second KRT Kawasaki and Michael van der Mark on the second Pata Yamaha. GRT Yamaha's Marco Melandri was the last rider within a second of Jonathan Rea.

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