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Jul 22, 2014

Sykes Fastest At Conclusion Of Two-Day World Superbike Test In Portugal

Tom Sykes (1) in action at Portimao.

Sykes ends official test at Portimao on topPortimao (Portugal), Tuesday 22 July 2014 -The two day official DWO test drew to a close today at Portimao’s Autodromo International do Algarve with Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) the quickest rider thanks to his 1’42.719s lap time set this morning. The reigning champion and his teammate Loris Baz mainly focused on fine-tuning their ZX-10R as well as testing new items, whilst KRT EVO peer David Salom tried out new parts developed for what will be next year’s Kawasaki machine.


Tom Sykes: “It was a useful test. In the first day the track was not in perfect conditions but we managed to make some progress with the ZX-10R anyway. We started the second day a bit late, we had still some items to try but we had not enough time. Anyway we tried different geometries and improved the overall feeling on the bike. We could make changes that were impossible to do during the race weekends. The lap times were not our biggest concern but it is always nice to finish on top. Now I am going to enjoy the summer break back in the UK and hopefully sort out my hand/wrist problem. I feel we have the right package to be competitive in the final part of the season.”

Aprilia Racing Team’s Marco Melandri and Sylvain Guintoli had the chance to evaluate a range of things that were left to be tested from earlier on in the season, but their on track duties were affected by crashes, fortunately with no major injuries. The Italian rider, who had a high speed fall yesterday, was able to return to action today and made for the time lost on the first day by completing 75 laps. Guintoli’s test was brought to an early end today in the final minutes of the morning’s session, as the rear of his RSV4 Factory came around throwing him to the ground. Despite no major consequences, Guintoli chose not to return to the track after being checked by the medical staff.

The Ducati Superbike Team concentrated their efforts on practicing starts with both Davide Giugliano and Chaz Davies, also testing previously developed solutions that the team could not try out during the racing weekends completed so far.

After missing the last round at Laguna Seca due to the injuries sustained one week before at Portimao, Claudio Corti (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) proved to be back on form by lapping the Portuguese track 93 times over the course of the two days.


Other EVO riders Alessandro Andreozzi (Team Pedercini Kawasaki) and Jeremy Guarnoni (MRS Kawasaki) made good use of the track time available to further gel with their EVO ZX-10R machines.

All riders also had the chance to try new development compounds brought by the SBK Official Tyre Supplier Pirelli, designed to increase tyre performance and durability in the hottest rounds of the season, starting from next year’s season opener at Phillip Island.

The World Superbike riders will now enjoy a six week summer break before the tenth round of the season, which takes place on September 7-9 at Jerez de la Frontera, Spain.

Times: 1. Sykes (Kawasaki) 1'42.719 average 160.936 kph; 2. Guintoli (Aprilia) 1'42.954; 3. Baz (Kawasaki) 1'43.110; 4. Melandri (Aprilia) 1'43.315; 5. Giugliano (Ducati) 1'43.592; 6. Davies (Ducati) 1'43.742; 7. Corti (MV Agusta) 1'44.485; 8. Salom (Kawasaki) 1'44.487; 9. Andreozzi (Kawasaki) 1'44.924; 10. Guarnoni (Kawasaki) 1'45.109.



More, from a press release issued by Ducati Corse:

The Ducati Superbike Team concludes two days of testing at Portimao

Portimao (Portugal), Tuesday 22 July 2014The Ducati Superbike Team and riders Chaz Davies and Davide Giugliano have completed two days of official testing at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve in Portugal today.

Chaz Davies and Davide Giugliano were at the Misano World Circuit for the first two days of World Ducati Week this weekend, before traveling to Portimao on Sunday, in order to participate in official testing sessions held at the Portuguese Autodromo Internacional do Algarve over the last two days.

The work schedule involved the testing of new Pirelli front and rear tyres, with the team able to identify some interesting solutions. In addition, the riders tried some new suspension settings and a new anti-wheelie setting, something that both Davies and Giugliano were pleased with. Conditions were very hot with track temperatures that reached 59°C, so the Ducati Superbike Team therefore also worked to improve grip in these extreme conditions, which have caused some difficulties up until now, during the hottest races. The factory riders then worked on practicing their starts, testing different solutions in terms of the clutch and hydraulic ratio. At the end of these two days, the team is satisfied with the work it has been able to complete.

The Ducati Superbike Team will now take a six week break, before returning to the tracks for Round 10 of the Superbike World Championship, scheduled to take place over the weekend of 4-6 September at the Jerez circuit in Spain.

Quotes at the end of testing:

Chaz Davies - Ducati Superbike Team #7

“This testing session has been useful, although I am still not quite feeling 100% after the crash at Laguna. Anyway, we’ve got a lot of work done, especially in the afternoon when conditions were difficult due to the heat. We have definitely collected a lot of useful data that will help us as we prepare for the last part of the season. We can now head into the summer break and have chance to recharge our batteries so that we are able to come back in September with the determination to finish the 2014 season in the best possible way.”

Davide Giugliano – Ducati Superbike Team #34

“The test was very positive. I wanted to complete as many laps as possible as well as optimize performance and improve our work method, concentrating on riding with used tyres, and we were able to do all of that. We have found many positives and have more of an idea as to where we need to work in preparation for the final races, identifying a few things that we’d been missing. I’m also pleased with the long-run that we made, as we were faster than in the race and so, considering the more extreme conditions, we should be pleased about that.”

Ernesto Marinelli – Ducati Superbike Project Director

“This test, coming right before the summer break, was important in terms of focusing our activities ahead of the September races. We concentrated on the problems that we have had in recent events and have found information and solutions that will definitely be useful during the remaining races. This has been an intense period, and now we have a few days in which to concentrate our efforts before the summer break. It is important to come back rested, and ready to fight even harder for the result that we promised the many ducatisti during last weekend’s WDW.”