January 26 2023
Pata Yamaha WorldSBK riders Toprak Razgatlıoğlu and Andrea Locatelli finished two days of testing strongly at Circuito de Jerez today, as preparations continue for the 2023 FIM Superbike World Championship.
Razgatlıoğlu stamped his authority with the fastest lap time on both days, just shy of the outright WorldSBK lap record with a 1’38.269 time set on Day 2. Teammate Locatelli finished the second day seventh-fastest overall while remaining focused on overall development of the Yamaha R1 WorldSBK, mainly looking to improve rear grip and corner exit acceleration as part of the overall 2023 development package.
Early next week, Yamaha Motor Europe and Crescent Yamaha will launch a new team look for the upcoming season before two further days of testing at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve (Portimão, Portugal) from 31 January.
Toprak Razgatlıoğlu – 1’38.269
“A very big crash this morning but I am very lucky, just a little pain in my left leg but now the feeling is coming better. We improve my R1, with good acceleration and good grip – I was trying today for 1’37 for the record, but I did not see! We used a Q tyre today and I see best lap, 1’38.2. In general, good testing for me – in Portimão we need to try some more set-up because we are happy but also we are not stopping. Just we try to keep making everything better – thanks to my team, every day they are working and now we start to see how the level of the bike is and I am very happy.”
Andrea Locatelli – 1’39.280
“These two days of testing were positive, because we returned on track in dry conditions – last time here in Jerez was raining for three days! We were able to take some confidence again with the R1 in the dry and it was positive to understand where we start with some new parts for 2023. Today, we improved a lot compared to yesterday and this is a good point to start again in Portimão. I was also able to push a bit more and to try a little bit to close the gap to the front guys, but to be honest we didn’t use a lot of soft tyres – or the Q tyre – to try and improve the lap time. We mainly try to work around the bike and search for good grip which is more important for the races. In the end, two positive days, no crash or mistakes and I had a good feeling on the bike, so now we can continue working next week.”
Paul Denning – Team Principal, Pata Yamaha WorldSBK:
“It’s been a chilly but dry two days here in Jerez and a positive start to Pata Yamaha’s 2023 season where we had some new items to test primarily focused around rear grip and acceleration. As always with the testing process, we’ve come away with some clear improvements and some areas which still need further work. Of course, Toprak being fastest on both days is a nice headline – but there are no points or prizemoney paid at testing! The best result we had was to escape without injury from his sizeable crash this morning. His R1 was less fortunate, but we can rebuild motorcycles more easily than riders. Andrea had a good feeling but wasn’t able to find the rhythm on his first day back yesterday – however he made an immediate step today and worked very well in terms of improving his pace but also his feedback and understanding of the next areas for improvement. We head across to Portimão looking for slightly warmer temperatures but all in all, a solid start to preparations before the first round at Phillip Island.”