News 20 Feb 2023

Razgatlioglu leads opening day of Phillip Island WorldSBK test

WorldSSP sees Ducati's Bulega on top, Bayliss third quickest.

Image: Supplied.

Pata Yamaha Prometeon’s Toprak Razgatlioglu posted a 1m30.674s to lead the opening day of the Superbike World Championship (WorldSBK) test at Phillip Island, with Australian Remy Gardner P7, while Nicolo Bulega emerged on top in WorldSSP as Oli Bayliss was third.

Razgatlioglu recovered from a crash in the opening session to set the benchmark this afternoon ahead of Aruba.It Racing Ducati pair Michael Rinaldi and defending champion Alvaro Bautista, who also suffered a fall, this afternoon.

Fourth was Jonathan Rea, the Kawasaki Racing Team rider leading much of the second session despite a crash, and ultimately finished 0.215s from Razgatlioglu’s time with a 1m30.889s. Fifth overall for the day was this morning’s pacesetter Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha Prometeon), ahead of top Independent team rider Philipp Oettl in P6.

It was a solid day for Gardner (GYTR GRT Yamaha) in seventh, coming to grips with the Yamaha R1 around the iconic 4.445km circuit, as freshly-minted BMW rider Garrett Gerloff (Bonovo Action BMW), double WorldSSP champion Dominique Aegerter (GYTR GRT Yamaha) and Michael van der Mark (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK) completed the top 10.

Image: Russell Colvin.

In WorldSSP, a 1m33.527s set in this afternoon’s session saw Bulega conclude the day on top, the Aruba.It Racing Ducati rider 0.216s clear of fellow Italian Stefano Manzi who shows early promise in the switch to Ten Kate Racing Yamaha this season.

Australia’s Oli Bayliss was third quickest, notching a 1m34.103s this afternoon as he continues to familiarise himself with the D34G Racing surroundings, but was notably 8.1 kph slower than Bulega in terms of top speed.

Federico Caricasulo and Can Oncu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) completed the top five, as others featuring inside the top 10 included Yari Montella who moves to the Barni Spark Racing team this season, 2021 WorldSSP 300 champion Adrian Huertas (MTM Kawasaki), Raffaele De Rosa, Niki Tuuli and former CIV Moto3 champion Nicholas Spinelli (VFT Racing Yamaha).

Testing continues tomorrow at the Phillip Island Circuit ahead of the opening round of the Superbike World Championship this weekend at the venue between 24-26 February.