April 01 2021
After revealing his new Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK colours earlier this week, team newcomer and class debutant Andrea Locatelli showed impressive form, completing 179 laps over two days at the official combined WorldSBK test at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
The 24-year-old Italian finished less than a second off the fastest rider in ninth overall, on just his third outing on the official Yamaha R1 WorldSBK. Locatelli’s pace and consistency over long runs as well as one-lap outright speed, combined with his impressive work rate and diligence bodes well for the season ahead.
After completing 70 laps on day one, Toprak Razgatlıoğlu was withdrawn from today’s running and placed in isolation this morning, following a positive result for COVID-19 in a mandatory pre-travel polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test.
All Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK personnel were tested at the same time and only Razgatlıoğlu returned a positive result. He subsequently submitted to a second PCR test this morning, which also returned a positive result.
Razgatlıoğlu will remain in Spain for self-isolation in accordance with COVID-19 protocols and public health authority guidelines. It is hoped he will be fit and return a negative PCR test to be able to re-join the team for further R1 WorldSBK development tests later this month.
The Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK upcoming test schedule includes 12-13 and 21-22 April at MotorLand Aragón ahead of the season opener at the same venue in May.
Andrea Locatelli: P9 – 1’41.258 / 179 lap
“I’m really happy about the second day here, we improved a little bit more in respect to yesterday and also now the feeling is a bit better on the R1 Superbike. We were able to try some things but in the end, we understand a lot more and I’m confident that we can make another step in Aragon during the next test. Barcelona is not an easy track and at the start we had too much spinning on the rear tire, together with the guys we worked to improve this and they did an excellent job over the two days. Now, we will see, but the position is not so bad for the start! For sure we can still improve a lot before the first race.”
Toprak Razgatlıoğlu: P11 – 1’41.334 / 79 laps
“The test yesterday was not bad, not a perfect day for me but still I feel the new R1 has good potential for this season. After working with my team and looking at the data last night, I think today would have been very good for us because where to improve was easy to understand. I feel great, but unfortunately, the PCR test was positive. This is outside of my control and now I only focus on being ready for the next test.”
Paul Denning - Team Principal, Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK
“It’s been a great opportunity to be here with the full WorldSBK Championship field here at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya and to see where the new developments for the 2021 R1 stack up. For Andrea, it’s been another really progressive two days of learning and his performance has increased significantly - a really good sign! He’s completed 179 laps over the two days without a single mistake – never missing an apex and no errors whatsoever – which shows that there is some raw pace still left in his pocket. His very mature approach towards learning his craft on the R1 WorldSBK is really appreciated by his crew and by Yamaha – and to be so close to the best times is very encouraging indeed.
Toprak, by his own very high standards, had a slightly frustrating day yesterday where some new components and settings didn’t work quite as expected and we lost a bit of the improvement path. But nonetheless, he was very close to the best time as always and was set for a much better day’s work today. As the team has informed everybody already, unfortunately after a routine PCR test Toprak’s result was positive. Therefore, we had no choice but to cancel today’s on track activity. Toprak has no symptoms, he feels 100% well with the exception of being extremely ‘bored’ already and won’t travel home to Turkey but will self-isolate here in Spain. Fingers crossed his condition remains good and that he’ll be able to re-join us at the Aragon test in mid-April following the self-isolation period.”