WHAT WAS SAID ON DAY 1 AT MISANO: “Toprak’s lap time was impressive… he’s pushing everyone!”

The MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship descended on the iconic Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli” for a two-day test. Day 1 generated plenty of headlines, from Honda’s new upgrades to how Danilo Petrucci (Barni Spark Racing Team) is feeling after his return to action. Here, you can read some of the hottest quotes from Thursday in Italy, with several topics covered.

A NEW SEAT FOR VAN DER MARK: “I went out, liked it, kept it on all day…”

BMW brought a new seat for Toprak Razgatlioglu (ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) at Assen, and now teammate Michael van der Mark tried it. Discussing this, and Razgatlioglu’s incredible lap time, the Dutchman said: “I feel alright. I just put it on. Toprak used it at Assen. It is different, a lot different. I went out, liked it, kept it on all day. We’re going to stay with it. Toprak’s lap time was impressive. It’s not just the SCQ time, it’s the laps he did before with the SCX tyre. He’s pushing everyone! I tried a lot today with back-to-back comparisons, things like swingarms, testing them back-to-back without changing the bike too much.”

A STEP FOR BAUTISTA? “I improved my feeling… we tried different setups, it didn’t work; I crashed at the last corner”

Reviewing his day at Misano, reigning Champion Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) said: “I’m happy because we did some tests that we wanted to do here. One of them was with engine behaviour. From this year, I didn’t feel the same as last year with the management of the gas, traction or the force I put on the tyres; for me, it’s something different from last year. In the winter tests, we couldn’t try as I wasn’t at my best. In the first few rounds, we were more focused on setup. Here, we had the chance to try. Fortunately, I was correct in my feeling, and we found we needed to work in this area, especially the first part of the throttle. For me, it felt like too much power and more than last year; technically, it was similar but here we adjusted the electronics, and I improved my feeling and the way I can ride the bike. We tried different setups on the bike, but it didn’t work; in fact, I crashed at the last corner. We were trying a bit of an extreme setup. I tried to force it and find the limit, and I found the limit very quickly.”

ELECTRONICS TESTING FOR LOWES: “First impression was good… I improved my feeling compared to last year here”

Reviewing his new electronics settings and a day where he didn’t get to use the soft tyres, Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) said: “I felt quite good on the bike and good to be back at Misano. We went out after lunch, more or less on the base bike, and I was able to go down to a good pace. We had some things to try but unfortunately, we had to finish early because we had some issues, so I missed the hour or so and didn’t use any soft tyres. I think I improved my feeling compared to last year here, so it was quite positive. I used the new electronics, or new settings, and it’s constant work like electronics are. We stuck with them all day and there’s still some small tweaks tomorrow, especially on the initial touch of the throttle; trying to get comfortable in the first sector, when I’m on the edge I’m still struggling to be fully confident to open the gas. Overall, the first impression was good. When you use the same thing, you get used to it, so when you change it, you need to understand the positives and negatives and maybe change the riding style a little bit too.”

LECUONA REVIEWS HONDA UPGRADES: “It was different… it gave us some positives and some negatives”

Lecuona: “The crash was just to wake up! It was a very small crash at Turn 8. It was my fault. The lap before, I went a bit wide, and I said, ‘I need to try’. I felt comfortable on the bike, so I needed to try to stop. I crashed just at the end, I lost the front very gently and the bike finished up just a metre inside the gravel. It’s one crash I need to have to know the limit. We tried only the new exhaust. We put the focus on our base and worked hard on the new bike to be ready for the race. It was different. It gave us a little bit more in one point, a little bit less in another. We tried to improve the bike, so we tried new things. Honestly, it had some positives and some negatives. We need to check the data and learn in case we can rebalance the bike.”

BULEGA SEARCHING FOR GAINS: “I’m still missing something when I’m releasing the brake with angle”

Bulega: “I’m happy but we have to work because my feeling is still not at 100% like at the beginning of the season. Step by step, I’m getting better. The feeling at Cremona wasn’t so good but here, today, we improved a lot. We got almost to my 100%. I think we still have to work because I’m not there yet, and I’d like to do something different on my bike when I’m riding. I don’t have the perfect feeling at the front and I’m still missing something when I’m releasing the brake with angle.”

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Source: WorldSBK.com

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