The final round of the 2022 WorldSBK season, the Grand Ridge Brewery round in Australia, has begun with a power-to-power battle between Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) who now looks for his first win since the distant Estoril round. is looking for. , and Álvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati), who returns to Phillip Island as WorldSBK World Champion, where he began his WorldSBK career with a treble of victories in the 2019 campaign.
Top 3: A tenth between first and second
Reid started the day setting the standard in one of his favorite settings and leading the table with a time of 1’31.284. The answer was given by Bautista, who was only a few thousandths behind the Northern Irishman in that first round, despite a crash in Turn 4 that had no material consequences. In FP2, the two heavyweights once again clashed at the top of the table. The Spanish rider led it for a good part of the session, but Ri displaced him again in the closing moments with a time of 1’31.127, leaving the new world champion 0.105 behind. Rea’s teammate Alex Lowes has also found his rhythm on the track he won in 2020, finishing the day in third, 0.289s ahead of his fourth place finish in FP1 before improving his time in FP2.
Rei was faster than Bautista in two of the first three sectors of the lap, but Talaverano’s top speed on the straight allowed him to take the lead at the end of the lap. Setting consistently fast laps, Bautista comfortably stood out from the other Ducati representatives, with teammate Michael Ruben Rinaldi managing only tenth at the end of the day.
It was not the most decisive day for Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK), as the Turkish rider finished fourth on the combined times and was unable to improve on his best time from FP1. At just under half a second behind Ri, the 2021 champion recorded the fewest laps in the top ten and was the only one in the group not to improve on his morning time. His teammate Andrea Locatelli was just behind him in fifth place and just 0.051 seconds, consolidating fifth place in FP1.
Sensational debut: Nagashima, featuring Honda; Oettl, best independent
The surprise and revelation of the day was Tetsuta Nagashima (Team HRC). In place of the injured Iker Lecuona, the Japanese scored a top-six finish on Friday, a promising start with the official Honda team. Nagashima was the best Honda rider in two sessions on Friday, as Xavi Wirz finished the day in 14th place.
There was also an unusual hero in the charge among the independents, as Philipp Ottel (Team Goeleven) excelled in FP2, improving his time by more than six tenths compared to FP1 to climb up to 7th . Behind him, Garrett Gerloff (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) was eighth in the combined standings, 0.931 s behind Riya, but nearly two tenths clear of his nearest rival.
BMW troubles: Redding ninth, Basani out of top 10
Scott Redding (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) has been the most prominent representative of BMW after setting his fastest lap behind Jonathan Rea, as has often been the case in 2022, though mainly in the Tissot Superpole. The only representation of BMW in the top ten has been English. Michael van der Mark (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) finished the day in 12th place, while Loris Baj (Bonovo Action BMW) could only set the 16th fastest time and crashed at Turn 4 during FP1, with no physical consequences Not done. In his last Friday as a WorldSBK rider, Eugene Laverty (Bonovo Action BMW) was 18th in the standings at the circuit where he took the last win on his record.
2022 Best Independent Rider Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing) has finished 11th on learning day as the Italian races for the first time at Phillip Island this weekend.
In what could be his last weekend as a WorldSBK rider, as he has no confirmed place for 2023, Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Pusetti Racing) finished the day in 13th place, while Xavi Fores (Barney Spark Racing Team ) ranked 15th. Hafeez Syahrin (MIE Racing Honda Team) finished 17th, Oliver Koenig (Orelac Racing Vernachura) finished 19th, Kohta Nozane (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) finished 20th, Leandro Mercado (MIE Racing Honda Team) finished 21st and Kyle Smith (TPR Team Pedercini Racing) in 22nd.
WorldSBK FP1 Top 6. Full results here:
1. Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 1’31.127s
2. Álvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +0.105s
3. Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) +0.289
4. Toprak Razgatlioglu (PATA Yamaha with BRICS WorldSBK) +0.477
5. Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with BRICS WorldSBK) +0.594s
6. Tetsuta Nagashima (Team HRC) +0.742s
The WorldSBK Tissot Superpole begins at 13:10 (local time, GMT +11) on Saturday. Follow it live and the best way with the 2023 WorldSBK VideoPass!