Razgatlioglu leads van der Mark by 0.046s in BMW 1-2, Rea bounces back for P3 in FP1

BMW had reasons to smile after Free Practice 1 for the Pirelli Catalunya Round after locking out the top two positions. Toprak Razgatlioglu (ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) led teammate Michael van der Mark at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya by only 0.046s in a hotly-contested start to the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship. 13 riders were separated by a second at the end of FP1 with a slightly mixed-up order in the first session of the weekend.

Razgatlioglu posted his 1’41.199s in the first 15 minutes of the 45-minute session to claim first place and put BMW on top at a track they’ve historically struggled at. The #54 was less than half a tenth clear of teammate Michael van der Mark as BMW took a 1-2 in Free Practice 1 at a circuit they’ve traditionally found tricky. Van der Mark’s late lap, coming in the final three minutes of the session, was 0.046s slower than Razgatlioglu, but he was able to finish ahead of Jonathan Rea (Pata Prometeon Yamaha) in third with the #65, like van der Mark, moving up the order in the closing stages.

Nicolo Bulega (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) was running in the top three throughout most of the session, but he was demoted to fourth when van der Mark and Rea moved ahead but he still finished as the lead Ducati rider. He was less than a tenth ahead of Andrea Locatelli (Pata Prometeon Yamaha) in fifth, after ‘Loka’ originally moved into the top three but found himself pushed down into fifth. However, he was the busiest rider on track, racking up 20 timed laps. Andrea Iannone (Team GoEleven) completed the top six, only three tenths down on Razgatlioglu to show how tight the WorldSBK field is in 2024.

Remy Gardner (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) claimed seventh spot with a 1’41.784s, finishing only 0.001s ahead of Danilo Petrucci (Barni Spark Racing Team) in eighth. Sam Lowes (ELF Marc VDS Racing Team), utilising an SCX tyre in the final stages of the session, was ninth with Garrett Gerloff (Bonovo Action BMW) in tenth and ensuring three BMW machines were inside the top ten but only seven tenth off his stablemate’s pace.

The top six from WorldSBK Free Practice 1, full results here:

1. Toprak Razgatlioglu (ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) 1’41.199s

2. Michael van der Mark (ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) +0.046s

3. Jonathan Rea (Pata Prometeon Yamaha) +0.201s

4. Nicolo Bulega (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +0.208s

5. Andrea Locatelli (Pata Prometeon Yamaha) +0.274s

6. Andrea Iannone (Team GoEleven) +0.298s

Don’t miss WorldSBK FP2 at 15:00 Local Time (UTC+2) using the WorldSBK VideoPass!

Source: WorldSBK.com

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