Testing resumes today at Jerez for the WorldSBK class. At least, it will if the track dries out enough to make conditions usable. Heavy overnight rain has soaked the track, and more rain is expected over the next two days.
The WorldSBK field will be hoping for dry track time for a lot of reasons, not least because it will be the first time that the Honda CBR1000RR-R will be seen at a public test.
Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam have ridden the bike at private tests already, the bike getting a run out at Aragon and Portimao, and reports were that the bike was very quick, but the rest of the WorldSBK field will want to see a direct comparison with the bike.
Photos of the Honda CBR1000RR-R have already been floating around social media. Here is one photo, with some of the engine visible. Besides the Honda, there are plenty of other things to keep an eye out for.
At Kawasaki, Jonathan Rea will be continuing his transition to a thumb brake, working on getting used to that feel.
Alex Lowes, meanwhile, will be trying to unlearn some of the things he learned about braking on the Yamaha, and find the limits on the Kawasaki ZX-10RR. Corner entry has been Lowes’ biggest problem so far.
Toprak Razgatlioglu, who took Lowes’ place in the Pata Yamaha squad, will be working on solving rear grip issues, the bike wanting to spin up on corner exit. Michael van der Mark has a new crew chief in former World Supersport champion Andrew Pitt, and has been working with a new rear shock from Ohlins.
He has also been testing fairings on the Pata Yamaha. American Garrett Gerloff will be working on his adaptation to a WorldSBK spec bike with the GRT Yamaha team, though conditions don’t look like they will be helping.
At Ducati, Scott Redding will be adjusting to the WorldSBK spec electronics on the Panigale, though with his experience in MotoGP, that is not too much of an issue. Rear grip was a bigger problem for the Englishman.
Teammate Chaz Davies is also focused on the rear of the bike, trying to get more weight on the rear to help with grip.
BMW faces a busy test, after Tom Sykes missed the Aragon test. Sykes has some catching up to do, while Eugene Laverty will be focusing on improving the power delivery on corner exit.
Laverty was very happy with the chassis at previous tests, saying it was the best chassis he has ever ridden.
WorldSBK commentator and Paddock Pass Podcast host Steve English is at the test, and will be posting updates on his Twitter feed and photographs on his Instagram account. You can also follow live timing of the test on the Jerez Circuit website.