2012 Phillip Island WSBK Round Up - Rea, Ducatis and Injuries

Jonathan Rea was quickest in Friday's first qualifying session from Philip Island, joining Carlos Checa as the only two men to put in sub-1.32 minute laps this weekend. 
The Ulsterman shot to the top of the timesheets in the afternoon session, after struggling with an electrical issue earlier in the day. Despite Rea’s provisional-pole, he said he still doesn’t have the race pace to stay with Checa and clinging on to Max Biaggi could be a tough ask, as well.
Things on the other side of the Ten Kate garage were not quite as rosy. Former 250cc World Champion Hiroshi Aoyama fell off early, leaving his crew to fix a sticky gear selector for much of the day, finishing in 15th, just more than a second behind his teammate.
Ducati looked again impressive at the Island, occupying three of the top five places after QP1. Although, not in the order one would imagine. Qualifying superhero Jakub Smrz put his Effenbert Liberty Ducati second in the order, ahead of Althea Ducati teammates, defending World Superstock Champion Davide Giugliano and defending World Superbike Champion, Carlos Checa.

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2012 Phillip Island WSBK QP1: Rea Holds Off Ducati Hordes

Johnny Rea has pulled off the first upset of the weekend at Phillip Island, by posting a sub-1'32 lap during the first session of qualifying for the World Superbike class to seize provisional pole. In the dying seconds of QP1, the Honda WSBK man took nearly a second off his best time to usurp the Ducatis, which had dominated until then, and seize the top spot. Rea's fast time demoted Effenbert Liberty's Jakub Smrz into 2nd spot, who had himself pushed Carlos Checa off provisional pole a few moments earlier.

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2012 Phillip Island WSS QP1: Parkes Steals Provisional Pole From Cluzel

Ten Kate Honda's Broc Parkes sits on provisional pole after the first day of practice for the World Supersport class at the Australian's home round at Phillip Island. Parkes took control in the early part of the session, but as the first qualifying practice started to wind down, Sam Lowes, Jules Cluzel and Fabien Foret did what they could to make life uncomfortable for Parkes.

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2012 Phillip Island WSBK FP1: Checa Holds Off Biaggi

Carlos Checa started the defense of his 2011 World Superbike title as he meant to continue, taking control of the first session of free practice for the 2012 season opener just over 10 minutes in and never relinquishing the position again. Max Biaggi confirmed that he is still in excellent shape, finishing just under two tenths behind the Althea Ducati, while the Aprilia man had another Ducati behind him, this time the Effenbert Liberty bike of Jakub Smrz. Kawasaki's Tom Sykes ended the first day half a second from Checa in 4th spot, while Honda's Johnny Rea took 5th.


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2012 Jerez Private Test Press Release From Ducati Corse: Test Team Works On Electronics

Below is the official press release supplied by Ducati Corse after the Test Team completed its work at Jerez, alongside the CRT teams:

Ducati Test Team completes test in Jerez, Spain

The Ducati Test Team finished a three-day test today at Spain’s Circuito de Jerez. As usual, the activities were led by Filippo Preziosi, who followed the work schedule carried out by official test rider Franco Battaini.

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2012 Jerez CRT Private Test Day 3 - De Puniet Hot On Tail Of Satellite Ducati

The final day of testing at Jerez for the CRT machines saw them claim their place as fully-fledged MotoGP machines. Randy de Puniet ended the day as the fastest of the Aprilia ART machines, finishing with a best time of 1:40.3, just three tenths behind Hector Barbera on the satellite Ducati - still basically the GP Zero which was tested at Valencia, and developed over the winter - and perhaps more significantly, right around the pace the satellite bikes were setting at Jerez in 2011, at just the bike's third test.

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Marquez Recovering Well, But Still Uncertain About Qatar

Marc Marquez' recuperation is proceeding apace, but he is still not at 100%. That is what the Spaniard told a press conference today at the presentation of one of his personal sponsors, Garmin, the manufacturer of navigation equipment. Though his vision is still improving, he is still not fully fit and is uncertain of being fit in time for his planned return on March 7th in a private test at Portimao, and even his appearance in the season opener in Qatar a month later is not absolutely certain.

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2012 Jerez CRT Private Test Day 2 - De Puniet Fastest Again On A Day Of Crashes

Testing continued for the MotoGP CRT machines at Jerez on Tuesday under blue skies and balmy temperatures, but despite ideal conditions, the track offered much less grip than it did on Monday. The tricky conditions saw a number of crashes during the day, with Aleix Espargaro going down twice, Danilo Petrucci crashing once and Karel Abraham crashing the satellite Ducati he was testing, stating afterwards that he thought there could be oil on the track.

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World Superbikes Look East: Indonesian Round Of WSBK Set For 2013 And Beyond

WSBK is looking east for its future. Today, Infront Motor Sports, the organization that runs the World Superbike series, announced that the Sentul International Circuit will host a WSBK round from 2013 onwards. The deal, backed by the Indonesian government, will see the series race in Indonesia for the next five years, as part of a push to promote the World Superbike series in the crucial markets of Southeast Asia.

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2012 Phillip Island Test WSBK Overall Times: Sykes Squeaks Ahead Of Checa

Tom Sykes took top honors on the second day of testing for the World Superbike class at Phillip Island, the Yorkshireman just nipping ahead of Althea Ducati's Carlos Checa in the early stages of the morning session to set the fastest lap of the two-day test. Though Checa was fastest again in the afternoon session, the 2011 World Champion could not get under the time set by Sykes, falling just four thousandths short. 

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2012 Phillip Island Test Day 2 WSS Times: Parkes Heads The Kawasakis

Broc Parkes leaves the Phillip Island World Supersport test on top of the timesheets. The Ten Kate Honda rider set the fastest time in the last session of the final test ahead of the WSS season opener at Phillip Island, which kicks off on Friday, just edging the Kawasakis of Kenan Sofuoglu and Fabien Foret, who had been fastest on Monday.

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Honda Press Release: Interview With Casey Stoner, On The 1000s, Parenthood, Defending Titles And Laguna Seca

The Repsol Honda MotoGP team has a small army of press officers working for them. In addition to the PR person assigned to each rider, as is common for all of the factory MotoGP riders, Honda also has PR people from Spanish petroleum sponsor Repsol, as well as their Honda Pro Racing arm, aimed at providing press information for all of the Japanese giant's racing activities. 

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