Ducati, Aprilia and Honda WorldSBK teams test at Lausitzring
Changeable local weather provided periods of both wet and dry track conditions, with riders concentrating on the dry periods to improve the race performance and other development aspects of their race packages. Some riders also tried out some development tyres for Pirelli, on which he set his best time of the test.
The 4.255km long Lausitzring will be the venue for the next round of the WorldSBK Championship, to be held between 18th and 20th August.
Marco Chini – Honda’s WorldSBK Operations Manager
“First of all, I would like to thank Michele Magnoni and Davide Giugliano for their professionalism and their availability to help us with the development work. The team continues to develop the bike one small step at a time. We can verify that Davide Giugliano is back on good form and his vast experience with production-based motorcycles was really useful to get a better understanding of the current level of the team’s Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2. Davide surely deserves to be considered among the number of riders who could race alongside Stefan Bradl in the remaining rounds of the season.”
“We tried out various items at this test and the feedback from the bike was good. We set strong lap times and found consistency. On standard race rubber I set a 1’36.7 after seven laps. I am happy with that because I think it was about equal to my previous Superpole lap time. We would have tested just a few more things on the final day but the rain came along again this afternoon and put a stop to that. Overall, it was a successful test at the Lausitzring. I think we are ready to race on this circuit, and to race at a high level as well.”
“After last year it was very valuable to test here at the Lausitzring. We were able to do some functional tests for KHI and also evaluate some ideas for chassis and front suspension set up. The weather changed after lunch, which brought the curtain down on our test – but we knew it was coming. We were able to evaluate all the items in the plan before then thanks to Pere’s good planning. Yesterday we were also able to run a race simulation and it’s great to see that we have improved the overall base of the bike compared to last year.”
Marcel Duinker, Crew Chief for Tom Sykes
“We had a clear target for this test which was to improve the chassis performance to be able to close the gap to the championship lead. Even though our track time was limited by rain we were able to reach our goal. Tom showed good initial speed but more than that he was very fast over race distance. It is nice to enter the rest of the summer break in this way because we have a good feeling after this test.”
“This test has been another very positive one. We started around 12 on the first day, because of rain in the morning, but when it dried we went through our plans. They were mainly to look for the base bike to use at the Lausitzring race weekend. Last year this one was maybe the hardest race of the season, but finally we made a big step and this bike worked better than last year. On day one we did a long run, which was faster than last year’s race. This means we took a step forward. On day two we tested some chassis items and some rear tyres for Pirelli. We worked through all the things we wanted to try and also Jonathan did a 1’36.6, on a race tyre.”
“It was a good test overall. On the first day we didn’t really stay within our usual window, and we experimented a bit. So, I was looking forward to this morning, to get back to what we know and gauge our level more in depth. We still have room for improvement but I’m happy with the way the Panigale R felt in its more usual setup. We did some important work. We had a good list of things to try and I think we learned something interesting. Also, it was important to lap in the wet, as I think we improved the setup for those conditions, so I’m really happy with that. Physically I’m OK, I just felt a little back ache on the first day, like in Laguna Seca, but it wasn’t an issue. Now we’ll take some time off to recharge ahead of the next challenge.”
“It was an important test for us, mostly because I didn’t know the track and it would have been really difficult to be competitive in Friday’s free-practice sessions without a reference. The track itself is fun, but it’s not an easy one to learn because the corner radiuses are a bit peculiar and most of all because the bumps force you to take unusual lines. Still, we managed to almost complete our work load. We just lacked a bit of time towards the end to fine-tune the details, but it was also important to lap in the rain. This track has little grip in the wet, so it’s a good benchmark, and we found a good feeling in these conditions. As the rain started to intensify, we decided not to take risks and ended our session. It’s been two challenging days, but we laid some good foundations to start from during the race weekend.”
“The main thing for me on Tuesday was to learn the track ahead of the race weekend. Its bumpy like everyone says, but it’s fun to ride with such a mix of low and high speed sections and the bike seems to work well. Today we did a really good job in just a few hours, and made two big steps forward. We set a lap under the lap record pace which shows we’re making big strides in chasing down the front guys. For this track we’ve been working on corner entry and allowing me to attack the front more. As we improve that area the rest improves with it, and we’ve found that yet again here. I feel positive because its the same direction we’ve been going in recently; Laguna Seca was a good step, and here we’ve continued that. I’m confident that we’re heading in the right direction, and when we come back here next month we’ll be aiming for the podium. It won’t be easy but it’s in our sights now.”
“We were able to try the bike in dry and wet conditions this which was very useful for us. We didn’t have as much as we wanted, but we used it well and got some really good data. It’s a tricky track to ride, but it’s good experience for the race. My target here was to improve my feeling on the bike and to make the front feel stronger for me, which was a problem this year. At Laguna we made some progress after Free Practice, and we made more improvements with it here. For the race next month I think we will be in a good position to fight. SMR and Aprilia Racing have been working really hard to improve the bike, and for sure we are a little closer to the front after this test”.
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