The 2017 season is now officially underway, as bikes roll back out for testing. First up are the denizens of the World Superbike series, with most of the major teams getting underway at a sunny, but not especially warm, Jerez de la Frontera circuit.
A good selection of teams are present, including the Kawaski, Honda, Yamaha, Ducati factory teams, the Milwaukee Aprilia squad – now resplendent in their official 2017 colors – the Althea BSB team, and Puccetti Kawasaki.
The WorldSBK riders are joined by the JG Speedfit Kawasaki team from BSB, as well as a selection of World Supersport and Superstock 1000 riders.
Reigning champion Jonathan Rea topped the timesheets, starting the new season where he left off the previous one. Rea was a quarter of a second faster than his Kawasaki teammate Tom Sykes, and six tenths quicker than Chaz Davies on the Aruba.it Ducati.
Marco Melandri put in a strong showing on his return to WorldSBK, ending just under three hundredths off the pace of Ducati teammate Davies. Alex Lowes was the fastest Yamaha rider, nine tenths off the pace of Rea.
Zulfahmi Khairuddin was the fastest of the World Supersport riders, over half a second ahead of Jules Cluzel, and just ahead of Nacho Calero. Marco Faccani was the quickest in the Superstock 1000 class.
Tuesday was also a day for debuts. The Ten Kate (soon to be Red Bull) Honda team rolled out the brand new 2017 Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade at Jerez, a bike with a very different sounding exhaust note.
The brand new Yamaha R6 was out on track too, with Federico Caricasulo and Lucas Mahias riding what looked to be an almost standard road bike. Neither of the official GRT riders were using a transponder.
Times at the end of Tuesday, January 24th:
|1||SBK||Jonathan Rea||Kawasaki ZX-10R||1:40.162||–||–||60|
|2||SBK||Tom Sykes||Kawasaki ZX-10R||1:40.422||0.260||0.260||61|
|3||SBK||Chaz Davies||Ducati Panigale R||1:40.784||0.622||0.362||68|
|4||SBK||Marco Melandri||Ducati Panigale R||1:40.812||0.650||0.028||71|
|5||SBK||Alex Lowes||Yamaha YZF-R1||1:41.058||0.896||0.246||55|
|6||SBK||Xavi Fores||Ducati Panigale R||1:41.396||1.234||0.338||50|
|7||SBK||Lorenzo Savadori||Aprilia RSV4 RF||1:41.416||1.254||0.020||55|
|8||SBK||Jordi Torres||BMW S1000RR||1:41.619||1.457||0.203||65|
|9||SBK||Nicky Hayden||Honda CBR1000RR||1:41.830||1.668||0.211||36|
|10||SBK||Michael vd Mark||Yamaha YZF-R1||1:41.908||1.746||0.078||67|
|11||SBK||Eugene Laverty||Aprilia RSV4 RF||1:42.142||1.980||0.234||52|
|12||SBK||Stefan Bradl||Honda CBR1000RR||1:42.255||2.093||0.113||47|
|13||SBK||Markus Reiterberger||BMW S1000RR||1:42.530||2.368||0.275||61|
|14||SBK||Randy Krummenacher||Kawasaki ZX-10R||1:42.747||2.585||0.217||44|
|1||SSP||Zulfahmi Khairuddin||Kawasaki ZX-6R||1:45.658||44|
|2||SSP||Jules Cluzel||Honda CBR600RR||1:46.182||0.524||0.524||52|
|3||SSP||Nacho Calero||Kawasaki ZX-6R||1:46.345||0.687||0.163||60|
|4||SSP||Robin Mulhauser||Honda CBR600RR||1:46.479||0.821||0.134||55|
|5||SSP||Kyle Ryde||Kawasaki ZX-6R||1:46.729||1.071||0.250||52|
|6||SSP||Hikari Okubo||Honda CBR600RR||1:47.107||1.449||0.378||64|
|1||STK||Marco Faccani||Ducati Panigale R||1:43.769||26|
|2||STK||Michael Rinaldi||Ducati Panigale R||1:44.023||0.254||0.254||70|
|3||STK||Mike Jones||Ducati Panigale R||1:44.211||0.442||0.188||53|
|4||STK||Alessandro Valia||Ducati Panigale R||1:46.256||2.487||2.045||26|
|5||STK||Julian Puffe||BMW S1000RR||1:46.932||3.163||0.676||53|
|1||BSB||Leon Haslam||Kawasaki ZX-10R||1:42.774||52|
|2||BSB||Luke Mossey||Kawasaki ZX-10R||1:43.574||0.800||0.800||35|
This article was originally published on MotoMatters, and is republished here on Asphalt & Rubber with permission by the author.