REPORT: Toprak TORCHES lap record pace at Misano as WorldSBK test starts

Toprak Razgatlioglu (ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) continued to set the pace for the rest of the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship paddock, as he ended the first day of the Misano test fastest ahead of his Championship rivals. Turkish superstar Razgatlioglu battled with current World Champion Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati) all day for the lead, but ultimately, a scarcely-believable 1’32.663s lap was enough to secure top spot. Current title holder Bautista ultimately was forced to settle for P3, whilst fellow Racing – Ducati rider Nicolo Bulega finished in P2.

BMW BACK WITH A BANG: Razgatlioglu and van der Mark pick up where they left off

Arguably the most anticipated team ahead of testing was that of the ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team, who haven’t been seen in action since Assen. Thankfully for fans, their riders looked as if they hadn’t skipped a beat. Turkish rider Razgatlioglu was one of the first riders out of pitlane at the sight of the green flag, and he took to the track immediately, establishing himself as one of the fastest riders during the opening display at Misano. He repeatedly swapped positions at the summit of the timesheets with Champion Bautista and looked set to settle for a P2 finish to end the opening day. However, Toprak set an insane lap pace of 1’32.663s with just minutes remaining, enough to secure him the summit spot at the end of day one. Teammate Michael van der Mark also had a solid showing, rounding out the top ten with a P10 finish. ROKiT BMW Team Principal Shaun Muir, accounting for van der Mark’s increased success on Day 1, explained experimenting on rider position, leading to a lower center of gravity in order to obtain a more natural turning position for the #60 rider.

DUCATI IMPRESS AGAIN AT MISANO: Bulega, Bautista lead the way

Much like their last test at Cremona, Ducati continued to impress on Thursday morning at Misano. Reigning World Champion Nicolo Bulega continued his impressive form by finishing P2, whilst being the only other rider to score a sub-1’32s time (1’32.731s). Teammate Alvaro Bautista completed the top three by finishing P3, finishing just under half a second behind his teammate. He also endured a crash at the last corner of the track. Elsewhere within the Bologna camp, ELF Marc VDS Racing Team’s Sam Lowes continued to catch the eye, finishing P5 by the time the chequered flag dropped to end the opening salvo on Thursday. Barni Spark Racing Team’s Danilo Petrucci capped his return from injury with an impressive P15, whilst Andrea Iannone of Team GoEleven ended the session in P7.


Yamaha, once again, continues to impress in testing. The Iwata-based manufacturer finished the opening section of Misano testing with three riders firmly inside the top 10. Ulsterman Jonathan Rea showed his developing feeling onboard the Yamaha R1, collecting an excellent P4 finish. Pata Prometeon Yamaha Team Principal Paul Denning pointed to a different chassis balance yielding positive results, as well as working on weight distribution and rider position as all being key factors accounting for Rea’s success. Rea’s teammate, Andrea Locatelli, was right behind, having collected a P6 finish. Remy Gardner continued his impressive testing form that he displayed in Northern Italy, finishing P8. Gardner’s Yamaha colleague, Swiss native Dominique Aegerter, was the lowest ranking Yamaha rider, finishing the session in a lowly P24.

ALEX LOWES P12: Kawasaki show signs of positivity

Kawasaki have shown cause for optimism and positivity recently. Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK’s Alex Lowes enjoyed a very positive start to his Misano test, ultimately finishing P12 in the combined standing. Speaking about Lowes’ successes, Pere Riba, his crew chief, mentioned that Lowes was going well in the direction that they planned in winter. As far as new items being tested, Riba said that it would mostly be electronics and some different intangibles, similar to those used by teammate Axel Bassani, who also endured a positive start to his Misano test, ending up in P10. Kawasaki Puccetti Racing’s Tito Rabat recently completed 233 laps across two days of testing at Cremona, and he has continued to put his testing form to good use, finishing the first day of the Misano test P11. Rabat, yet again, completed the most laps out of any rider on track, finishing with a total of 110.


Unfortunately, Team HRC continues to struggle with testing lately. Both Iker Lecuona and Xavi Vierge looked quite some way off the pace, ultimately finishing in P15 and P16 respectively. That being said, both HRC riders have been clear that their expectations are tempered, and that they are more geared towards improving the fundamentals of the bike itself. Speaking about their struggles as well as their ambitions, Team HRC Team Manager Jose Escamez outlined the development and implementation of a new exhaust system for the Team HRC riders, with the aim and hope of developing power delivery and throttle connection for both riders. For the full insight into Honda’s technical developments, you can catch them all here.

MONTELLA VS HUERTAS VS MANZI: Three tenths between three riders

WorldSSP was also represented at today’s test, with just three tenths separating the top three riders from the class. Yari Montella ultimately finished as the top WorldSSP rider, with a best time of 1’37.222s. Adrian Huertas was hot on Montella’s heels with a time of 1’37.237s. Stefano Manzi completed the trio with a top time of 1’37.489.

The top six from Day 1 at Misano, full results here:

1. Toprak Razgatlioglu (ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) 1’32.663s

2. Nicolo Bulega ( Racing – Ducati) +0.068s

3. Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati) +0.488s

4. Jonathan Rea (Pata Prometeon Yamaha) +0.543s

5. Sam Lowes (ELF Marc VDS Racing Team) +0.683s

6. Andrea Locatelli (Pata Prometeon Yamaha) +0.927s

Want to stay in the thick of the action in 2024? Make sure you subscribe to the WorldSBK VideoPass!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *