The Aruba.it Ducati WorldSBK riders are heading to Aragon. There, Chaz Davies and Alvaro Bautista are to test the Ducati Panigale V4R as part of Ducati's test team, in preparation for the Aragon round of WorldSBK, due to be held there from 5th to 7th April, in just over two weeks time.
The test is crucial for Chaz Davies, in particular. The Welshman has struggled to adapt to the new Ducati V4, which requires a radically different riding style to the V-twin Panigale 1199R it replaces. Davies missed part of the winter testing schedule due to a back injury, which severely restricted his time in the saddle.
His teammate, on the other hand, has won all six WorldSBK races (four full races and the two Superpole races) and leads the championship at the moment. Alvaro Bautista may arguably have had less of a step to make in terms of bike, coming as he did from the Desmosedici in MotoGP, but he did have to adapt to the steel brakes and much more pliant Pirelli tires used in WorldSBK.
On paper, this is a track which should be very strong for Chaz Davies. The Welshman has won at least one of the two races held at each round at the Spanish track since 2015, doing the double in 2016 on the Ducati. He also won both races in 2013, riding the BMW S1000RR. If he can figure out how to get the best from the Panigale V4R at a track he is comfortable at, he should be able to get himself back into the championship.