WorldSBK, Lausitzring: Friday roundup – World Superbike & World Supersport
As the WorldSBK riders returned to action after their summer break at the Prosecco DOC German Round Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) topped the Friday timesheets with a new lap record of 1’37.172 around the Lausitzring track. Sykes’ colleague Jonathan Rea and the Kawasaki Racing Team duo’s Aruba.it Racing – Ducati rival Chaz Davies were also in the top three.
Sykes also led the way in FP1 with a 1’37.337 lap which was also under the previous lap record, before going even faster in the afternoon. Sykes then crashed in FP2 at turn 4, but was not adversely affected by the accident.
In an incident packed FP2 session the riders had carried out just under 25 minutes of practice before the red flag came out following a crash for Stefan Bradl (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team) at turn 14. As marshals worked to clean the track a further disruption was then caused by heavy rain – which led to a delay of over an hour in restarting the session.
Earlier in the day in clear conditions at the 4.255km Lausitzring track Sykes had set a rapid pace on his Kawasaki ZX-10RR with that aforementioned new lap record, whilst Rea was +0.167s behind him and Davies was marginally slower, being +0.189s off P1. Neither Rea nor Davies would improve in FP2 and therefore ultimately ended the day +0.332s and +0.354s behind Sykes respectively.
Milwaukee Aprilia’s Lorenzo Savadori was fourth fastest on the combined timesheets thanks to his best FP1 time and in the afternoon Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) moved into the top five.
Savadori’s Milwaukee Aprilia teammate Eugene Laverty was sixth fastest overall. Meanwhile, returning to WorldSBK for a wildcard ride at Round 9 Germany’s Markus Reiterberger (Van Zon Remeha BMW) placed as the top BMW rider in seventh overall.
The combined Friday top ten also featured Leon Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse), Jordi Torres (Althea BMW Racing Team) and Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team).
The riders will be back on track for FP3 at the Prosecco DOC German Round at 8.45am local time on Saturday morning. Then SP1 takes place at 10.30am, with SP2 at 10.55am and Race 1 at 1pm.
At the Prosecco DOC German Round on Friday Jules Cluzel (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda) was the fastest rider in the WorldSSP class, courtesy of his best effort from FP1.
The French rider’s 1’41.476s lap saw him top the combined timesheets at Lausitzring as the riders returned to action following the summer break. Cluzel could not improve his time in the afternoon but his morning pace put him ahead of his rivals overall.
Heavy rain had fallen earlier in the afternoon before FP2 meaning most of the riders could not improve on their FP1 times. That was the case for Sheridan Morais (Kallio Racing) and Lucas Mahias (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team) who were nonetheless still both in the top three on the combined timesheets.
World Champion Kenan Sofuoglu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) survived two big wobbles in FP2 unscathed and was fourth quickest overall, followed by Federico Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team).
In sixth place was Luke Stapleford (Profile Racing), whilst in seventh and eighth respectively Niki Tuuli (Kallio Racing) and Gino Rea (Team Kawasaki Go Eleven) were the only riders in the top ten to register their best times of the day in the afternoon.
That top ten of riders guaranteed with automatic participation in SP2 on Saturday was rounded out by Hikari Okubo (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda) and Kyle Smith (GEMAR Team Lorini).
The start of the FP2 session was delayed by more than an hour due to weather conditions which also disrupted WorldSBK FP2 preceding the afternoon’s WorldSSP practice. The grid therefore concluded their riding for the day after 6pm local time.
The WorldSSP riders will recommence their activities at the Prosecco DOC German Round on Saturday morning at 9.20am local time. SP1 is at 2pm and SP2 follows at 2.25pm.