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Rea and Bautista share the Sunday WSBK spoils in Portugal

2019 WorldSBK

Round 10 – Portimão


Jonathan Rea wins Superpole Race but Bautista bounces back to claim Race Two victory. Rea now has a 91-point buffer over Bautista in the championship chase. There are three rounds remaining with Magny-Cours hosting the next round late this month, September 27-29.  

In WorldSSP 600 Italian rider Federico Caricasulo won his third race of the season and is now just 10 points behind team-mate and championship leader, Randy Krummenacher.

WSBK Rnd Portimao SS Caricasulo Win
Federico Caricasulo

Dutchman Scott Deroue triumphed in the World Supersport 300 category for his first win of the season which moved him into second place in the overall championship standings. Manuel Gonzalez has one hand on the championship trophy with a handy 38-point lead in the series. 

WSBK Rnd Portimao SSP Derou Win
Scott Deroue

There are no Aussies in either the World Superbike or Supersport categories, but three Aussie youngsters contested the 300 Supersport category. 

Tom Edwards was the highest placed Aussie in WorldSSP 300 in 11th place, one position ahead of countryman Joel Kelso who put in an impressive weekend on what was a last-minute call-up to replace an injured rider in the Nutec RT-Motorsports squad. Tom Bramich had a troubled weekend and carded a 28th place result. 

Superpole Race

The 2019 Motul FIM Superbike World Championship fired back into life on Sunday morning with the Tissot Superpole Race. After ten laps of action Jonathan Rea took his ninth win on the bounce at Portimao, whilst a relentless battle for the podium took hold behind the reigning four-time WorldSBK champion.

WSBK Rnd Portimao SPRace Start
Superpole Race Start

Lights out and it was another good get-away for Jonathan Rea, holding on to his first position from Tom Sykes and Leon Haslam.

Sandro Cortese had a better start and was fourth ahead of Alex Lowes and his team-mate Michael van der Mark, whilst Alvaro Bautista kept his nose clean and was seventh.

However, Bautista dropped positions and soon found himself in a battle with Marco Melandri, Toprak Razgatlioglu and team-mate, Chaz Davies. At the end of lap one, Rea hadn’t broken clear of Sykes, whilst Haslam was under pressure from the pursuing riders.

Lowes showed better pace than race one, now up to second ahead of Sykes and Haslam and soon, there’d be more problems for the British pair.

WSBK Rnd Portimao Sykes Haslam Bautista
Sykes, Haslam, Bautista

Bautista was picking his way through the pack, taking Razgatlioglu and capitalising on a Melandri error at turn 12. Next up, Cortese was dispatched and then it was two-for-one as the Spaniard eased ahead of Haslam and Sykes. All moves were completed on the front straight. Bautista’s teammate Davies was not having a strong race, down in tenth.

WSBK Rnd Portimao Davies Melandri Baz
Davies, Melandri, Baz

Sykes soon fell to the back of the battle for fourth, with Haslam and Razgatlioglu getting ahead – the Turkish rider taking both at turn five with five to go, whilst Michael van der Mark made his way ahead of Cortese. Two laps later, he would be ahead of Sykes – the 2013 WorldSBK champion now down in seventh and relinquishing his front row starting position.

Bautista was now chasing Lowes and on the final two laps, the two were head-to-head, with the Spaniard getting the better of Lowes on the front straight at the start of lap 10. Whilst Lowes stayed with him, there was nothing he could do about the Ducati rider. But there was nothing the pair could do about runaway leader, Rea, who took the victory and starts from pole once more in race two. Bautista will be elevated to the front row ahead of Lowes, who took his best result at Portimao.

Razgatlioglu leapt from 13th to fourth after he held of Haslam and van der Mark in the closing stages. The group were able to hold on ahead of Sykes and Cortese, whilst Loris Baz (Ten Kate Racing – Yamaha) took ninth to start from row three – the original row three all being replaced after the Tissot Superpole Race. Most notably, Chaz Davies finished outside of the top nine and will start from 14th.

Race Two

WSBK Rnd Portimao R Start
Race Two start

Off the line and it was a great start for Rea from pole position but a disaster for Bautista, who plunged down the order to sixth place after lap one. Toprak Razgatlioglu was a fast starter and up to second, ahead of Leon Haslam. Alex Lowes was fourth and team-mate Michael van der Mark was fifth, just ahead of Bautista who was right in the hunt.

WSBK Rnd Portimao R Starts
Race Two start

Bautista soon began his comeback, first picking off van der Mark down the front straight, before picking off Lowes two laps later. He hit third a lap later, before slicing ahead of Jonathan Rea to momentarily lead with 15 to go. But Razgatlioglu had other ideas, as the Turkish rider hit the front of the field.

WSBK Rnd Portimao Razgatlioglu Bautista Rea
Razgatlioglu, Bautista, Rea

With Razgatlioglu and Bautista leading, Rea had to try and find a way to react to the change of the guard at the front. Haslam was still in the mix with the two Pata Yamahas just behind; with the front six covered by just one second.

A lap later, the horsepower of the Ducati propelled Bautista back into the lead of a race for the first time since Misano, and the Spaniard soon began to put the hammer down.

WSBK Rnd Portimao R Rea Razgatlioglu
Rea, Razgatlioglu

Rea fought back on his fellow Kawasaki rider Razgatlioglu, but whilst he closed up on Bautista, he wasn’t able to make a move on the Spaniard.

Further back and at half race distance, isolation of the leading six began to set in. Lowes made his move on Haslam with 10 to go, after the ‘Pocket Rocket’ lost an entire second to his fellow Brit.

Loris Baz closed on the battle for fourth. Behind them, Tom Sykes and Jordi Torres were squabbling over ninth, just behind Marco Melandri.

With the gap between Bautista and Rea extending to over a second, and Razgatlioglu sat in a safe third place – barring acts of God – the big battle on track was for fourth, with Lowes and Haslam swapping places with five laps to go. At turn three, van der Mark parked his Yamaha in the way of Haslam, bringing Baz right into play. Haslam fought back however, and a lap later he was back in fifth place and chasing Lowes.

In the closing laps, the race began to come alive at the front, with Rea lapping quicker than Bautista and the gap coming down to less than a second, although with two laps left to run, it was beginning to look a little bit late for Rea to return to the front. However, his teammate Haslam, was climbing all over Lowes in the battle for fourth.

On the final lap, the gap at the front closed dramatically and Rea was right with the Spaniard, but on the run to the line Ducati power prevailed over Rea’s resilience.

Bautista was back on top and took the verdict, winning for the first time at Portimao. Rea was second and Razgatlioglu took a tenth career podium in third. Lowes held-off Haslam but Baz made it to sixth and beat van der Mark. Lowes therefore returns to the third overall.

WSBK Rnd Portimao R Bautista
Álvaro Bautista

Melandri putting in a hearty effort for eighth place, whilst Sykes was able to beat Sandro Cortese in the remaining places inside the top ten. Jordi Torres was eleventh and couldn’t return to the top ten, with Michael Ruben Rinaldi, Markus Reiterberger , Eugene Laverty and Leandro Mercado completing the points.

The 1-2 gap comes down to 91 points in the championship race, but the battle for third is well and truly alive, with 45 points covering third to seventh.

Riders Reflect on Portimao weekend

Jonathan Rea

“I felt strong with the bike. I was pushing in Race Two and where Alvaro was gaining time on the front straight and the top straight, coming out of T5 I almost felt that he was increasing the gap. But when we went into T14 I had already eaten up that advantage he had in the first sector. It was enough motivation to keep pushing. He was making a few mistakes and it was enough for me to keep the pressure on. You never know what can happen and I could see the gap to Toprak was increasing in those last six laps. Yesterday I ate too much tyre in the beginning but today on lap 19 I could set a 1’43.2. I enjoyed that final race; we had a fight. I am proud of myself because I had fight in me.”

WSBK Rnd Portimao SPRace Podium
Superpole Sprint Race Podium

Álvaro Bautista

“It has been a very tough weekend for me, especially physically because my shoulder is still not at 100%. I felt worse this morning after yesterday’s race so I tried to start well in the Superpole Race. Unfortunately, I lost a lot of positions and used up most of my energy, but I finished second which meant that I could start from the front row in race 2. In the afternoon I again made a bad start, lifting the front of the bike up and losing some positions but I was still in the leading group so was not too worried. Mid-race I felt my pace was stronger so I decided to go for the lead and push hard until the end. I could manage the advantage but in the last two laps I felt every drop of energy leave me, luckily it was the last lap because I didn’t have anything left. It was my first time here in Portimão and I’m happy to get a win again after more than two months.”

WSBK Rnd Portimao Bautista Ducati
Álvaro Bautista

Toprak Razgatlioglu

“This morning we tried a new and different electronics set-up, which gave me a good feeling. In the short race it was important to get a good starting position for the final long race, so fourth position was not bad. In the final race I followed Johnny and Bautista and after ten laps the tyre had a big drop. I know all the riders had the same but I am happy because again I got on the podium.”

WSBK Rnd Portimao R Bautista Podium Rea Toprak
Race Two Podium

Alex Lowes

“Yesterday I was a bit frustrated because a lack of grip in the latter stages meant I couldn’t really race, but it was the complete opposite today, with two really good races. The battle with Leon Haslam in Race 2 was fantastic and really good fun. He was struggling with the front and I was struggling more with the rear, so while he could get the run on me, he couldn’t get the bike stopped, which made for a really close race. To get a third and a fourth today, at a track where I’ve struggled a bit in the past when it’s hot, is fantastic. Good racing, I really enjoyed it and now I’m looking forward to Magny-Cours.”

Leon Haslam

“It was a good fight in the final race and I felt I should have got Alex Lowes, as I had more grip than him at the end. That said, from half distance I sort of lost the front grip on the right side, a little bit but I felt comfortable behind Johnny and Toprak. After about nine laps I lost my advantage with the front so I dropped off the pace quite a lot which put me in a battle with Alex. I was managing the front but I got in a bit of a scuffle with van der Mark, which lost me the tow. I managed to bridge that gap quite quickly but I was suffering just to get the thing to stop. I tried to pass several times into turn one. We made a lot of steps for that race with the bike balance but I am a little bit disappointed because I felt again we had the pace to go with the podium guys, especially in the first half, but just a few little niggles and mistakes just knocked me out of it. My pace in the Superpole race should have got me a better result.”

WSBK Rnd Portimao R Haslam
Leon Haslam

Chaz Davies

“After yesterday’s good result, we made a set-up change to try and improve even more, but it didn’t work the way we expected. Obviously starting from P14 also means it’s pretty hard work from there and for me the race was tough. The initial pace was not so bad even though I struggled in the early laps a little bit, then just when I thought I could make an impact on the race I started encountering some problems with the gear shifter and it wouldn’t let me ride in the right way. The podium here in Portimão was good, but I’m disappointed with the way things turned out today. Overall the weekend has given me optimism going forward and it just proves we’ve got a pretty good competitive window now, even on tracks that are usually unfavourable for us.”

WSBK Rnd Portimao Davies Baz
Chaz Davies

Michael van der Mark

“The Superpole race wasn’t easy, but our goal was to improve the feeling with the bike and secure a better grid position for Race 2 and we achieved that. We made a small change to the set up ahead of Race 2 and, as a result, I struggled a lot more than yesterday, unfortunately. Yesterday I could ride the bike exactly how I wanted, but today I simply didn’t have a good feeling from the start and wasn’t able to maintain a consistent pace. I lost a lot of time, which is a shame, but we know where we need to improve and I’m confident we’ll be back at the front in Magny-Cours, which is a track I really like.”

WSBK Rnd Portimao R Baz VanDerMark
Loris Baz and Michael Van der Mark

Loris Baz

“It was a hard day yesterday for me, as I made a mistake in qualifying and that had a huge impact on the weekend as a whole. In the Superpole race, the only goal was top nine to improve my grid position for Race 2 and I managed that, despite dropping back to 18th from the start. Race 2 was okay, other than another bad start which is something we need to work on, but I managed to come back. I lost a lot of time, around three seconds, behind Tom Sykes and that meant once I’d managed to pass him, I had a big gap to Michael van der Mark ahead of me. But I managed to close the gap without killing the tyre, which is where the race simulations we did at the test paid off, and I eventually passed him for sixth. I’m happy with the result; the guys worked really hard after my mistake yesterday, so big thanks to them. We enjoyed a strong weekend and we showed that we’re getting closer and closer to the podium.”

Tom Sykes

“It has been a bit difficult and obviously in race conditions we saw that we have some more work to do. Today we had some quite extreme race conditions and as a result collected some good data. In the last race we made a few changes to the BMW S 1000 RR, which helped us to move forward and the race itself has given us a lot of information and a clear point where we are lacking and where to try and improve. Having said that, we certainly have some positives to take away from this weekend in terms of track performance. A big thanks to the whole of the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team; we’ve had quite an intense few days testing here a few weeks back and here at the race weekend so credit to them, we will keep working and hopefully get to where we want to be in a few weeks’ time at Magny-Cours.”

WSBK Rnd Portimao Sykes Lowes Haslam
Tom Sykes, Alex Lowes, Leon Haslam

Marco Melandri

“It’s been a difficult round, but a positive is that for Race 2 we found the best set-up that we’ve had here this weekend in Portimão. Even so, it was still a tough race. My problem is clear, but finding a solution has so far proved tricky, despite the hard work of Yamaha and my team. I need a better start, because this is always better, but I also need to be more consistent in the race. It was really hard for me to use the same line every lap and I was working the tyre really hard. When the front grip dropped down then I was struggling a lot today. In the end I think everyone was struggling for rear grip, but we know we still have some work to do ahead of the next race in Magny-Cours.”

Sandro Cortese

“From the first lap in Race 2 this afternoon I had a big problem with the rear of the bike sliding around and I wasn’t able to stay with the second group. We don’t know what the cause was, because I felt pretty good in the Superpole race this morning and I had a good race. This afternoon I managed to finish top-ten but my expectations after this morning were much higher. But it was a weekend without a crash, my self-confidence is back, and I was happy with both Race 1 and the Superpole race. Race 2 this afternoon I felt much stronger in myself than was reflected in the result.”

Markus Reiterberger

“We tried a little modification in the warm up. It felt positive but we knew that we should not be fooled since in the cooler mornings the grip is always better and our bike works really well then.
Unfortunately, we struggle more and more the warmer it gets. We were able to use the soft tyre in the Superpole race but I finished only 14th so it was not a good race. For the second race, we made another change and the feeling was great. The start was good, but maybe I was a bit too cautious in the first two corners and lost a few places. But then I was able to set good lap times and keep in touch with the group but I just could not get past Michael Ruben Rinaldi. We are still lacking a bit of acceleration and power.”

WSBK Rnd Portimao Reiterberger
Markus Reiterberger

Takumi Takahashi

“I’m not satisfied with my results in today’s races. I lost too much time behind other riders over the first laps and ultimately my pace was not competitive enough. I wanted to do better. Generally speaking, the weekend was a good and exciting experience even if I’m sorry Leon is still recovering from his surgery. The three-race format is tough, but it was good to pair with Ryuichi again, and everything ran smoothly in the garage. I wish to thank the team for all their hard work”.

Ryuichi Kiyonari

“Today we were able to find better balance in terms of the bike set-up and this meant that we were able to use a softer front tyre spec with respect to our usual choice. That improved both my feeling with the front and my general confidence on the bike. I’m sorry that results are still far from good, but I’ll keep working hard with my team and trying my best to do better. I really enjoyed sharing the garage with Takumi this weekend, we get along very well but it will be good to have Leon back at the next round”.

WorldSBK Results/Championship Standings

Source: MCNews.com.au

Jonathan Rea scores eighth consecutive win at Portimao

Supersport 600

In recent rounds, the momentum has been firmly with Caricasulo but Krummenacher still held the championship lead. Heading into the race tomorrow, it is Caricasulo who starts on pole.

WSBK Portimao Day SS Pole Caricasulo

Randy Krummenacher was the rider who slotted in at the top spot, ahead of the surprise package of Isaac Viñales (Kallio Racing), the Spaniard making his debut at the Algarve International Circuit. Kyle Smith’s strong weekend looked set to continue in the early stages, as the British rider was up as high as third once everyone had settled down with the opening times. There was a crash for Raffaele De Rosa (MV AGUSTA Reparto Corse) at Turn 14 but the Italian made it back to the pits. At Turn 11 in the final 10 minutes, Isaac Viñales crashed but was unscathed in the incident.

WSBK Portimao Day SS Caricasulo

As the session came to an end, Caricasulo hit pole position, ahead of Krummenacher and Viñales. However, there was still plenty of opportunity for change, as the Kawasaki charge was strong, being led by Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), with Ayrton Badovini (Team Pedercini), Hikari Okubo (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) and Kyle Smith all lining up behind the trio of Yamahas at the front. Jules Cluzel (GMT94 YAMAHA) needed a strong lap in the closing stages, languishing down in eighth.

On his final lap, Federico Caricasulo blasted in a very quick time, storming to the fastest lap of the weekend and putting himself 0.4s clear of the chasing bunch and securing back-to-back poles for the first time this season. Krummenacher was only able to achieve second position as he is recovering from nagging injuries picked up from Friday, whilst Lucas Mahias was back on the front row again in third.

Leading the charge from row two, despite a crash, Isaac Viñales was fourth and impressive on his return to action after eight weeks off in the summer. Raffaele De Rosa’s issues earlier on in the session saw him elevate up the order to the middle of row two in fifth, whilst Ayrton Badovini made it three Italians in the top six and completed row two. Kawasaki and MV AGUSTA are certainly bringing the charge to Yamaha at the front of the grid.

Row three features Japanese star Hikari Okubo, who is yet to start from outside the top nine in 2019. Joining him on the third row, it was a disaster for Jules Cluzel who starts just eighth after winning last time out at Donington Park. Britain’s Kyle Smith was ninth, as he looks to secure the Europe Supersport Cup crown this weekend. Completing the top ten is Jules Danilo (CIA Landlord Insurance), making it all four manufacturers represented inside the top ten. Wildcard Miquel Pons (H43 Team NOBBY TALASUR-BLUMAQ) was 11th.

Supersport 600 Superpole

Pos Rider Bike Time
1 64   F.   Caricasulo Yamaha YZF R6 1m44.220
2 21   R.  Krummenacher Yamaha YZF R6 1m44.664
3 44   L.   Mahias Kawasaki ZX-6R 1m44.990
4 32   I.    Vinales Yamaha YZF R6 1m44.998
5 3   R.  De Rosa MV Agusta F3 675 1m45.156
6 86   A.  Badovini Kawasaki ZX-6R 1m45.201
7 78   H.  Okubo Kawasaki ZX-6R 1m45.349
8 16   J.   Cluzel Yamaha YZF R6 1m45.399
9 11   K.  Smith Kawasaki ZX-6R 1m45.538
10 95   J.   Danilo Honda CBR600RR 1m45.661
11 71   M. Pons Yamaha YZF R6 1m45.822
12 31   D.  Valle Yamaha YZF R6 1m45.944
13 61   G.  Ruiu Honda CBR600RR 1m46.020
14 94   C.  Perolari Yamaha YZF R6 1m46.210
15 84   L.   Cresson Yamaha YZF R6 1m46.233
16 56   P.   Sebestyen Honda CBR600RR 1m46.416
17 10   N.  Calero Kawasaki ZX-6R 1m46.780
18 4   C.  Stange Honda CBR600RR 1m46.848
19 30   G.  Van Straalen Kawasaki ZX-6R 1m46.913
20 74   J.   Van Sikkelerus Honda CBR600RR 1m47.001
21 6   M. Herrera Yamaha YZF R6 1m47.031
22 22   F.   Fuligni MV Agusta F3 675 1m47.097
23 47   R.  Hartog Kawasaki ZX-6R 1m47.240
24 65   M. Canducci Yamaha YZF R6 1m48.950
25 53   G.  Sconza Honda CBR600RR 1m49.726
26 40   A.  Gyorfi Yamaha YZF R6 1m50.040
27 67   G.  Matern Kawasaki ZX-6R 1m50.145

Supersport 300

After a lengthy break, it was time for the riders to dial themselves back in across both the groups in their 20-minute sessions. The top 30 would make it through to the main race on Sunday, whilst those outside of it would have to finish inside the top six of the Last Chance Race. Not needing to worry about that, it was Manuel Gonzalez (Kawasaki ParkinGO Team) who stormed to pole position.

WSBK Portimao Day Gonzalez
Manuel Gonzalez

Group A saw two of the championship rivals clear at the top, with Galang Hendra Pratama (Semakin Di Depan Biblion Motoxracing) topping the session ahead of Ana Carrasco (Kawasaki Provec WorldSSP300). The Indonesian riders lap time was an all-time lap record for the class at the circuit; Hendra Pratama had to give it his best shot, as he has a 12-place grid penalty to contend with for irresponsible riding at Donington Park. Manuel Bastianelli (Prodina IRCOS Kawasaki) was third ahead of Koen Meuffels (Kawasaki MOTOPORT), with four race winners in the top four after Group A Superpole.

WSBK Portimao Day Gonzalez Hendra Pratama
Galang Hendra Pratama

Group B soon took to the circuit and the times were immediately right on those of Hendra Pratama. Victor Steeman (Freudenberg KTM Junior Team) was getting quicker and quicker early on, straight away going into second on the grid. Manuel Gonzalez (Kawasaki ParkinGO Team) was also quick straight away, whilst Scott Deroue (Kawasaki MOTOPORT) was also in the mix for pole position.

WSBK Portimao Day Steeman
Victor Steeman

With just under 12 minutes to go, championship leader Gonzalez hit top spot on combined times but there was plenty of time left to run. Victor Steeman, who had been lapping consistently fast and looks to have good pace, took pole position away from Gonzalez five minutes later, as he chases his second pole position of his 2019 WorldSSP300 campaign. It was a disaster further down the field for Beatriz Neila (BCD Yamaha MS Racing), as she suffered a flat rear tyre with less than five minutes to go.

WSBK Portimao Day Carrasco
Ana Carrasco

Manuel Gonzalez’ bid to become WorldSSP300 champion grew stronger as in the closing two minutes, he 17-year-old took pole position back from Steeman and remained ahead overall. Steeman took second place and Hendra Pratama was third from Group A but will start in 15th due to his 12-place grid penalty. This means that championship challenger Ana Carrasco will inherit a front row grid start. Scott Deroue finished fifth overall but will start from fourth, whilst Andy Verdoïa (BCD Yamaha MS Racing) will start from fifth after completing the session sixth, whilst Bruno Ieraci (Kawasaki GP Project) will move onto the row two due to Hendra Pratama’s penalty.

Marc Garcia (DS Junior Team) heads up the third row on the grid, ahead of Manuel Bastianelli and Beatriz Neila, who achieves her best grid position with tenth but will start ninth. Completing the top ten on the grid, Aragon 2018 race winner Koen Meuffels. It was a disaster for Hugo De Cancellis (Team Trasimeno Yamaha), who suffered two crashed and will start down in 29th position on Sunday.

Oliver König (ACCR Czech Talent Team – Willi Race) breezed clear to take the WorldSSP300 Last Chance Race win, as the battle ignited behind him. The Czech rider eased away in the early stages of the race and soon found himself away at the front of the field, whilst behind him, the positions from third back to sixth had not been sorted out. But who would come out on top?

With König away and running at the very front of the field, it would be Dion Otten (MTM Racing) who took second place, although he had little company in the closing stages of the race. Behind, however, the battle really had come alive in the closing stages. Mateo Pedeneau (Team MHP Racing – Patrick Pons) would get the better of his teammate Enzo De La Vega to take the final position in the top three, whilst both made it through to the main race tomorrow.

Bahattin Sofuoglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing by TSM), who ran fourth for most of the race was fifth in the end after a tricky final lap, but he held off Adrien Quinet (TGP Racing), who completely missed FP1 on Friday. Just missing out on racing action tomorrow was Marco Carusi (Team Trasimeno Yamaha), with the Italian coming home seventh.

Joel Kelso is impressing in his wildcard appearance and is the top qualifying Australia. Kelso will start from 14th on the grid while countrymen Tom Bramich and Tom Edwards will start from 25th and 27th positions respectively.

Supersport 300 Combined Superpole

Pos Rider Bike Class Time
1 M. Gonzalez Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m55.345
2 V.  Steeman KTM RC 390 R B 1m55.513
3 G. Hendra Pratama Yamaha YZF-R3 A 1m55.873
4 A.  Carrasco Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m56.116
5 S.  Deroue Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m56.235
6 A.  Verdoïa Yamaha YZF-R3 B 1m56.349
7 B.  Ieraci Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m56.354
8 M. Garcia Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m56.410
9 M. Bastianelli Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m56.471
10 B.  Neila Yamaha YZF-R3 B 1m56.576
11 K.  Meuffels Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m56.676
12 S.  Di Sora Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m56.834
13 J.  Buis Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m56.901
14 J.  Kelso Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m56.920
15 U. Orradre Yamaha YZF-R3 A 1m56.923
16 D. Blin Yamaha YZF-R3 B 1m56.971
17 B.  Sanchez Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m56.972
18 M. Kappler KTM RC 390 R B 1m56.994
19 L.  Loi Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m57.060
20 J.  Jahnig KTM RC 390 R A 1m57.095
21 N. Kalinin Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m57.120
22 K.  Sabatucci Yamaha YZF-R3 A 1m57.189
23 T.  Kawakami Yamaha YZF-R3 A 1m57.225
24 M. Perez Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m57.284
25 T.  Bramich Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m57.311
26 D. Iozzo Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m57.330
27 T.  Edwards Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m57.377
28 F.  Rovelli Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m57.492
29 H. De Cancellis Yamaha YZF-R3 B 1m57.528
30 P.  Giacomini Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m57.626
31 O. König Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m57.653
32 M. Carusi Yamaha YZF-R3 A 1m57.660
33 J.  Facco Yamaha YZF-R3 B 1m57.714
34 J.  Perez Gonzalez Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m57.734
35 B.  Sofuoglu Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m57.777
36 M. Pedeneau Yamaha YZF-R3 B 1m57.838
37 E.  De La Vega Yamaha YZF-R3 A 1m57.841
38 D. Otten Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m58.020
39 Y.  Okaya Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m58.033
40 A.  Quinet Honda CBR500R B 1m58.231
41 K.  Aloisi Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 1m58.287
42 R. Dore Yamaha YZF-R3 B 1m58.509
43 J.  Foray Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m58.773
44 F.  De Bruin Yamaha YZF-R3 B 1m59.082
45 B.  Molina Yamaha YZF-R3 A 1m59.086
46 V.  Schwarz Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m59.258
47 M. Hrava Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 1m59.471
48 A.  Pelikanova Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 2m00.112
49 K.  Hartmann Yamaha YZF-R3 A 2m00.203
50 P.  Fragoso Yamaha YZF-R3 A 2m01.109
51 D. Delouvy Kawasaki Ninja 400 A 2m01.294
52 V.  Correia Esturrado Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 2m01.897
53 S.  Naud Kawasaki Ninja 400 B 2m02.007
54 A.  Longo Kawasaki Ninja 400 A /

Source: MCNews.com.au

Jonathan Rea tops opening day in Portugal | WSBK

2019 WorldSBK

Round 10 – Portimão

Jonathan Rea topped the opening day of practice for the tenth round of the Superbike World Championship overnight in Portugal. 

The Northern Irishman also displayed metronomic consistency as he headed championship rival Alvaro Bautista.

Jonathan Rea – P1

“This morning the track was a little bit green and the kerbs were a little bit slippery, but the track has now ‘rubbered-in’. I feel we have improved the bike a little bit from the tests we did recently, but we can still improve a little bit more for tomorrow. We have just a few areas to improve and this morning we worked on the different rear tyre options we have for the race. This afternoon I worked on finding a rhythm and putting some laps on a tyre. The consistency looked very good. For day one, I feel quite good with the bike.”

WSBK Portimao Day Rea
Jonathan Rea

Alvaro Bautista – P2

“Today was a very positive day because, as I had problems with my shoulder in the tests two weeks ago, it was important to verify my physical condition and luckily everything went OK as the pain was a lot less. In the afternoon we did more laps than in the morning because it was important to work on the setup and tyre choice in the hot conditions that for sure we will also find in the race. I’m optimistic, I’ve got a good feeling with my Panigale V4 R and physically I feel quite good.”

Third position was held by Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team), having topped the test at Portimao in August. The British rider, who won’t remain at the Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team for 2020, was out to prove a point and ended the day just 0.120s adrift of top slot.

Alex Lowes – P3

“It’s always the same here in Portimão, with the track conditions changing as the temperature goes up. But today was the best I’ve felt here in the hotter conditions, so it was a good second practice session. We tried something right at the end that didn’t quite work as we were expecting, but it’s been really positive with plenty of laps on used tyres. There are still a couple of areas in which I’d like to improve, such as on corner exit where I need to be a bit smoother when the track temperature is higher and the surface is a little bit greasy. We’ll have a look through the data tonight to see if we can find some improvements, but I’m happy to be back on the bike and looking forward to tomorrow.”

WSBK Portimao Day Lowes
Alex Lowes

Pata Yamaha team-mate Michael van der Mark was also looking strong, finishing the day in fifth place to make it two Yamahas inside the top five.

Michael van der Mark – P5

“It’s been a solid opening day here in Portugal. The first session this morning was a good one for us, even if the track didn’t feel the same as it did at the test here last month. But that’s typical Portimão and not unexpected. I struggled a little bit with the front feeling on the bike, so it’s also been challenging, especially this afternoon with the increase in track temperature. We’re still working to improve our pace in the heat, but the best set-up for this is proving a little elusive at the moment. But we’re definitely going in the right direction because the feeling with the bike improved at the end this afternoon. We have a few ideas to try tomorrow, but we’ll be ready to race.”

WSBK Portimao Day Van der Mark
Michael van der Mark

Leading the Independent charge in fourth was Toprak Razgatlioglu.

Without a ride so far for 2020, Markus Reiterberger (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) quietly reminded everyone of his capabilities with a sturdy seventh place overall. Reiterberger was just under three-tenths clear of his teammate Tom Sykes, who crashed in FP1. The 2013 WorldSBK champion was one of just five riders who improved their times in FP2, although he was still only 12th.

Markus Reiterberger – P7

“Today was a good day, overall P7 which is not so bad and just only +0.500 behind the front guys. This morning I enjoyed my riding and tested out the tyres which gave us a good direction to work in. This afternoon it was really hot which made It difficult continue the same lap times as this morning so we focused on getting the balance of the bike and the tyre wear. Tomorrow we will try to work on the brake stability but for sure I will be again pushing for the top 10.”

Tom Sykes – P12

“I think P12 is not where we are realistically, that result was from this morning where we didn’t push and obviously the conditions were better. This afternoon in race conditions I was very happy with the changes we made to the BMW S 1000 RR and gained some good information, so overall I’m feeling quite comfortable and confident in those hot conditions which for me is the real preparations for the race tomorrow.”

Day One WorldSBK Combined Times

Source: MCNews.com.au

Can Bautista get back on top as WSBK returns from summer break?

2019 WorldSBK

Round 10 – Portimão

The title fight between Jonathan Rea and Alvaro Bautista will re-ignite this weekend after the European summer break.

Heading the championship standings with a comfortable lead, Jonathan Rea has completed a remarkable comeback. The Ulsterman, who was been as far as 61-points behind Alvaro Bautista earlier this season comes to a circuit of which he has regularly been dominant, in fact Rea has won the last seven races at the venue.

Jonathan Rea

“I am really excited to get back into racing again. It has been such a long time since the last WorldSBK races and I can’t wait for the Portimao weekend. I love the track and after the tests we have a clear direction of the base settings that we will start with on the Ninja ZX-10RR. We will work step-by-step through Friday, trying to get a race package, and then focus on our qualifying to make sure we have a good race. I am going to have a lot of travelling support over from Northern Ireland and I cannot wait to get back to business. That race weekend feeling is something I really enjoy, together with all my team.”

WorldSBK POR DWO Test Day WorldSBK FP Action Rea
Jonathan Rea – 2019 Portimao WorldSBK Test

Alvaro Bautista has endured a torrid couple of rounds and with his departure from the Aruba.It Racing – Ducati outfit confirmed, he has nothing to lose in the final four rounds of the season. Bautista has tested at Portimeo but has never raced at the undulating Portuguese circuit and will need to get back to the top of his game if he has any chance of taking the battle for the #1 plate up to Rea across the final rounds of the series. It has not been officially announced, but the fact that Bautista will spearhead an all-out assault on the 2020 series with Honda is public knowledge.  Scott Redding will take Bautista’s place at Ducati and join Chaz Davies in the Aruba.It Ducati Racing squad. 

Álvaro Bautista

“The two days of testing we did here last week were very useful, even though I preferred to rest my shoulder on the second day because it was the first time I had been back on the bike since my injury at Laguna Seca. I’ve had a few more days to recover, but during this weekend we might have to change our approach and try and rest the shoulder on Friday to be in a position to tackle the races in the best possible condition. Luckily, the two tests I’ve done at this circuit between January and now will be a great help, we have some markers, I know the track better and as a result it will all be a bit easier.”

WSBK Rnd Donington Sun Bautista Davies
Álvaro Bautista

Even though the gap to Rea is now 81 points, with four rounds still to be held (and a total of 248 points available) anything can still happen.

The battle for third place in the championship is well and truly alive and kicking, with six riders covered by 50 points. Alex Lowes arrives in Portugal off the back of finishing the Portimao test on top and is the leader of that sextet of riders that are vying for the #3 plate. It has also been confirmed that Lowes will not remain with the Pata Yamaha team for 2020 and where the Brit will end up next season is yet to be decided. There are possibilities that Lowes might join Bautista at the new look Honda squad, or could perhaps even join Kawasaki Racing Team in 2020 if KRT decide to demote Leon Haslam. 

Lowes has had a difficult time of things at Portimao in recent years, with just two top ten results from the last six races held there. 

Alex Lowes

“I’m really looking forward to getting back to racing. While it’s nice to have a bit of a break in the middle of the season, you do miss racing. I’m ready now for the second part of the season, where the challenge is going to be to hold on to third place in the championship, and I need to be fighting for the podium in every race at these last four rounds if I’m to do that. We were really strong at the recent test in Portimão, where I did my fastest ever lap at this track to finish on top of the timesheet, which shows the bike is working well. The conditions were quite hot at the test and I didn’t quite have the feeling I wanted in the afternoons when the track temperature went up, but we have some ideas to improve in this area and, hopefully, we will have similar temperatures on Friday to work on this. I’m feeling really positive and I’m raring to go this weekend.”

WorldSBK POR DWO Test Day WorldSBK FP Action Lowes
Alex Lowes – 2019 Portimao WorldSBK Test

On the other side of the garage, fortunes are different. Now back to full fitness and ready to go, Michael van der Mark will seek to build on his fourth place in the Portimao test. Three Portimao podiums in the last three races and all for Yamaha, can the 26-year-old return to winning ways?

Michael van der Mark

“It was a nice long summer break, which gave the wrist I fractured in Misano a chance to heal fully, but now I can’t wait to get back to racing. We head to Portimão for the race off the back of a really good two-day test at the circuit, in which I was really fast, and the aim is to rediscover the feeling I had before the crash in Misano, so that I can fight for podiums and race wins once again. I’ve enjoyed quite a bit of success in Portimão in the past, with three podium finishes in two years, and I hope we continue this trend this time around, to start the last part of the season in the strongest way possible.”

WorldSBK POR DWO Test Day WorldSBK FP Action VdMark
Michael Van der Mark

Chaz Davies returned to winning ways in emotional fashion at Laguna Seca, the Welshman will look to continue working in this way ahead of the remainder of the season. With his 2020 future confirmed, Davies will also want to gel further with the V4R Ducati and end the season strongly. A best result of second in Race 1 in 2017 is the highlight for him at Portimao. Can he win again?

Chaz Davies

“After the summer break and about two months after my win, I know it’s going to be a tough race here at Portimão, but the gains we made at Laguna Seca and the work we did in the test have really put a bit of a spring in my step. I feel like the bike is now a lot different to the one I’ve been racing this season and I’m looking forward to the race because I feel our pace is quite decent. Going on past results, for me this track is not the easiest one to get a win at, but I’m feeling optimistic because the Panigale V4 R is going better around here than the twin ever did. I’m feeling confident, even though Portimão is not an easy track and the bumps and undulations throw up a lot of different challenges.”

WorldSBK POR DWO Test Day WorldSBK FP Davies
Chaz Davies – 2019 Portimao WorldSBK Test

Leading the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team charge is Tom Sykes, who has been on pole three times at Portimao, whilst also achieving two wins at the rollercoaster Portuguese circuit. Sykes has achieved podiums at every WorldSBK round since Misano, highlighting the development of the new machine. The team themselves head into the round with optimism, having signed Eugene Laverty for the 2020 season. However Sykes did suffer a few tumbles at a recent test session which could have dented his confidence. 

Tom Sykes

“I am really looking forward to heading back to the Portimão circuit on the back of a successful two days of testing there recently. During the test, we certainly gathered a lot of information for the set-up of the BMW S 1000 RR. Overall at the test, we tried various bike set-ups that we’re not usually able to do during the race weekends due to the restricted time which proved very, very good. We got some positive results, so hopefully we can pick up where we left off and try to keep our run of podium places on the go. The podium is certainly the target for the remaining races.”

WorldSBK POR DWO Test Day WorldSBK FP Sykes
Tom Sykes

The Independent team charge continues to be led by Toprak Razgatlioglu and the 22-year-old relentlessly set the pace on the opening day of Portimao testing. Having visited the circuit just once in his WorldSBK career, 2018 yielded an eighth and a DNF. A podium during every round since Imola, will Razgatlioglu continue his form?

WSBK Rnd LagunaSeca Sunday Toprak Razgatlioglu
Toprak Razgatlioglu

Never discount other former Portimao winners who are in the Independent battle too, such as Marco Melandri and Eugene Laverty.

Marco Melandri

“It’s a bit of a rollercoaster, but Portimão is a track I like a lot, it’s one that is fun to race at and I’ve always been fast there in the past. This weekend I head to Portugal in a different situation, as I’m still looking to improve my feeling with the bike even after the two days of testing at the circuit, but we will continue trying to improve during the weekend. The team has been working so hard, even over the summer break, so I am determined to pay them back with the best result possible in Portugal this weekend.”

WSBK Rnd Misano Sun Rea Melandri
Marco Melandri chasing Leon Haslam at Misano

Leon Haslam has taken four podiums at the venue for three different manufacturers: will Kawasaki be his fourth?

Leon Haslam

“I have had several podiums with various manufacturers over the years at Portimao, and enjoyed some really good racing. The recent test was really positive for our team and on race tyres I think we were ranked 1-2. I was only one or two tenths of a second off Jonathan’s best lap time with a race tyre. It has been a tough year in some ways with a few injuries and having to learn some circuits. But Portimao is a circuit we have tested at now and every time I have done that so far I have made the podium. Obviously that is the aim but also I feel we can be even more competitive and challenge the front guys. That is the main aim this weekend and I am really looking forward to it.”

WorldSBK POR DWO Test Day WorldSBK FP Action Haslam
Leon Haslam – 2019 Portimao WorldSBK Test

Loris Baz took a second for Kawasaki back in 2014 and also keep your eyes on Michael Ruben Rinaldi, Jordi Torres and Sandro Cortese, as they all go in search of their first podiums of 2019.

The Moriwaki Althea Honda Team challenge will see a new face, with Takumi Takahashi replacing Leon Camier, as the British rider continues to recover from a shoulder injury. He will join Ryuichi Kiyonari, who returns to the Autodromo Internacional Algarve for the first time in a decade.

WSBK Rnd Misano Sun Takahashi
Takumi Takahashi

Other riders to watch out for include Leandro Mercado, who has a best of seventh at Portimao and has been top ten finisher in the last three rounds. Markus Reiterberger will look to end the season on a high and secure himself a ride for 2020. Alessandro Delbianco will make his Portimao WorldSBK debut, although he was sixth in the FIM Superstock 1000 race last season. All of the regular riders will be joined by former FIM Superstock 1000 champion, Sylvain Barrier. The French rider will wildcard with the BRIXX Ducati outfit.

WorldSBK Championship Standings

Pos Rider Points
1  Jonathan Rea  433
2  Alvaro Bautista  352
3  Alex Lowes  220
4  Michael Van Der Mark  215
5  Leon Haslam  202
6  Toprak Razgatlioglu  191
7  Chaz Davies  184
8  Tom Sykes  170
9  Marco Melandri  138
10  Sandro Cortese  100
11  Michael Ruben Rinaldi  97
12  Jordi Torres  96
13  Loris Baz  76
14  Markus Reiterberger  60
15  Leandro Mercado  48
16  Eugene Laverty  41
17  Leon Camier  26
18  Lorenzo Zanetti  21
19  Alessandro Delbianco  21
20  Ryuichi Kiyonari  20
21  Peter Hickman  14
22  Thomas Bridewell  12
23  Yuki Takahashi  11
24  Michele Pirro  10
25  Samuele Cavalieri  6
26  Hector Barbera  3


Round 9 at Autodromo Internacional do Algarve – Portimao is set to become a crucial stage for the 2019 FIM Supersport World Championship. With just four race weekends remaining on the calendar, the battle for the championship title will reach new heights in Portugal.

WSBK Rnd Misano Sun WorldSSP Sunday Race Action Krummenacher
Randy Krummenacher

Just 15 points divide championship leader Randy Krummenacher from his teammate Federico Caricasulo. Also, Frenchman Jules Cluzel, now third in the standings 26 points behind Krummenacher, is back in contention after the outstanding victory taken in the UK before the summer break. For the three title contenders, there is no much time left before a champion will be decided. That is why Portimao leaves no space for mistakes. But, at the same time, it is when risks should be taken in order to make the difference.

For Krummenacher the ACERBIS Portuguese Round could represent a pivotal moment to extend his championship lead. But to do so, the Swiss rider knows that he has to finish at least better than Caricasulo, that this year has always shared the podium with Krummenacher apart from Donington Park.

Federico Caricasulo

“My first target from Portimão onwards must be to take points from my teammate in order to close the gap to the top of the standings. The second target is to win races. The two-day Portimão test was an important one for us. We were very fast, and it means we go into the first of the remaining four races in Portugal with some confidence. We have a lot of data from the test that we can refer back to, so I think we’ll be strong from the first free practice session at Portimão this weekend.”

WSBK Rnd Misano Sun WorldSSP Federico Caricasulo Lucas Mahias Randy Krummenacher
Federico Caricasulo

In the UK, it was Krummenacher himself to miss his regular visit to the parc fermé for the first time in 2019. On the other hand, the Italian has an excellent chance to remount on the championship leader. At the Official Test, that took place at the same Portimao racetrack in August, Caricasulo showed off a good pace setting the fastest lap time. But, once again, Krummenacher was close behind him, as second quickest. Will we see another head-to-head battle between the BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team riders in Portugal?

Although the battle for the World Title remains a matter between three men, we can’t say the same for the Portuguese race trophy fight. Fresh off the back of his two consecutive podiums in Misano and Donington Park, 2017 WorldSSP World Champion Lucas Mahias looks forward to keeping on with his momentum in Portugal. The Frenchman didn’t take part in the Official test but spent two useful days working with his team in Misano during the summer break. 2018 saw Mahias taking the pole position and the victory in Portugal. Will the French rider be able to do the same this year with the Kawasaki ZX-6R of the Puccetti Team?

WSBK Rnd Misano Sun WorldSSP Sunday Race Action Mahias
Lucas Mahias

For the Portuguese Round, an eye should also be kept on Japanese rider Hikari Okubo, and the MOTUL Dutch Round podium finisher Thomas Gradinger. The Japanese rider is still chasing his first WorldSSP podium, while the Austrian is currently sixth in the standings. Moreover, Raffaele De Rosa and Spanish rider Isaac Viñales both proved to be competitive with their packages around Portimao in the recent Official Test. If they can repeat the same performance over the race weekend, they won’t miss the chance to take part in the challenge.

WSBK Rnd Misano Fri WorldSSP De Rosa
Raffaele De Rosa

At the ACERBIS Portuguese Round, Dani Valle is set to make his WorldSSP debut with MS Racing as a substitute rider for Maria Herrera. Apart from the regular 26 entries, Miquel Pons will make a wild card appearance onboard the Yamaha YZF R6 of H43 Team NOBBY TALASUR-BLUMAQ.

With just two rounds more for the European FIM Supersport Cup, Kyle Smith (Team Pedercini Racing) has his first chance to win the title in Portugal by extending his championship lead of at least 25 points on the second. Will the British rider be able to celebrate in Portugal?

WorldSSP Standings – Top 10

  1. Randy Krummenacher 173
  2. Federico Caricasulo 158
  3. Jules Cluzel 132
  4. Lucas Mahias 82
  5. Hikari Okubo 73
  6. Thomas Gradinger 70
  7. Raffaele De Rosa 69
  8. Corentin Perolari 49
  9. Isaac Vinales 45
  10. Peter Sebestyen 38

Source: MCNews.com.au