Notes on the second WorldSBK race of the weekend from our man on the ground at Lausitzring:
Press releases from the organizers and teams after Sunday's races at the Lausitzring:
Notes from the first WorldSBK race in Germany from our man on the ground:
Press releases from the World Superbike teams and organizers after the first race in Germany:
Press releases from the organizers and the teams ahead of this weekend's German WorldSBK round:
Stop Pause, Press Play: WorldSBK is back
Riders are ready to take on the second half of the season
On first glance the field looks to be close ahead of this weekend's Suzuka 8 Hours. Yamaha led the opening session, Honda topped the second, and there are four manufacturers inside the top five and all within a second of the pace.
It seems to be setting up for a great weekend of racing, but when you delve into the times it's clear that, while Honda has made progress, they are still playing catch up with their CBR1000RR SP2. Despite a crash for Jack Miller the 634 machine led the way in the afternoon session but with Yamaha electing to use only one set of tires in the session their true one lap pace is still unknown. Miller's crash came on what would have been his fastest lap of the day but having rolled off on his previous lap may have been caught out by a slightly cold tire. There were plenty of positives on the opening day for Honda and while they probably need to make a small step to compete with Yamaha they are in the ballpark.
Press releases from some of the WorldSBK teams after the two-day test at the Lausitzring in Germany:
KRT Completes Summer Testing In Germany
Kawasaki Racing Team riders Jonathan Rea and Tom Sykes made use of the mid-season break in competitive action to test their Ninja ZX-10RR machines at the Lausitzring on July 25 and 26.
In readiness for the next round of the WorldSBK Championship the KRT duo completed a two-day test at the Lausitzring in Germany, taking away very positive results.
It looks set to be a quieter year on the rider market for WorldSBK with the leading seats already filled for 2018 but there will still be some significant deals announced in the coming weeks and months.
Jonathan Rea, Tom Sykes, Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri are all secure in their seats for next year but Sykes had been linked with a move away from Kawasaki earlier this summer. Prior to winning two races before the summer break the 2013 World Champion had been touted as a potential target of Yamaha but with wins in the bag it looks highly unlikely that he will make a switch.
For Ducati there is little reason to change their status quo and the only change in their ranks could be the addition of a second bike to the Barni squad. The Italian entry has thrived with Xavi Fores in the last year and came close to adding a second machine for this year. If there is a fourth Ducati on the grid it will likely have a rider bringing money to the table for Barni.
After Laguna Seca the future of WorldSBK was once again questioned. Asking the right question may be more important than finding the right answer immediately
“I've said it before and I'll say it again, democracy simply doesn't work,” so said this intrepid reporter when faced with reports that Bart's Comet would bring destruction to Springfield. It was a time of uncertainty and peril for America's greatest city but one from which it recovered by maintaining the status-quo.
While the WorldSBK paddock isn't standing on Mount Springfield singing Que Sera Sera and waiting for the comet to hit, it is facing a moment of truth about where the series is heading. It's always easier to swim with the tide but for WorldSBK patience and thoroughness are more important than being swift and decisive in making the wrong decision.
Since Imola the paddock WorldSBK has been filled with rumor and counter rumor about the direction that the series will take. Will there be a spec ECU? Will there be concessions for different manufacturers? Will there be testing restrictions placed on the successful teams? The list of possibilities has been the talk of the paddock with Dorna's Carmelo Ezpeleta even suggesting making the series into a Stock class, but what is actually best for WorldSBK?
Notes from our correspondent on the second WorldSBK race at Laguna Seca: