GARDNER TOPS FIRST WORLDSBK OFF-SEASON TEST IN JEREZ
Wild weather showed to be no deterrence for Australian rider Remy Gardner [GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK] on Day 1 of the WorldSBK off-season test in Jerez, topping the time sheets on the disrupted day with his fastest time of a 1:39.837.
While attention was fixed on Rea’s debut with the Pata Yamaha team, the GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team continued their strong performance from the Spanish round, with Gardner and teammate Dominique Aegerter finishing the day out inside the top 3. Gardner, in particular, set the pace with a time of 1’39.837s over 25 laps, with Aegerter trailing by 0.269s following his recent podium successes.
Day 1 of the test was also productive in the GYTR GRT garage, with Aegerter testing a handful of new items for Yamaha, and also the GRT Yamaha team, while there was also a different swingarm available to allow for different linkages.
Meanwhile, there was plenty of hype and eyes on Jonathan Rea [Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK], transitioning from the Kawasaki ZX-10RR, focused on adapting to his machinery, placing fourth with a time of 1’40.302s after 12 laps.
Michael Ruben Rinaldi’s future in the WorldSBK paddock was only announced on Monday, but he left no time to waste coming accustom to his new life in the Motocrosa Racing garage; with recently crowned World Supersport Champion Nicolo Bulega jumping to the premier category and replacing Rinaldi in the Aruba.it – Racing Ducati team.
Rinaldi lead the Ducati charge, rounding out Day 1 in second spot with his fastest time of 1:40.034s after 36 laps. For the newly crowned double World Champion Alvaro Bautista, the first day of the test didn’t quite go to plan, crashing at Turn 13 and further bringing out the red flags briefly. Despite his crash, Bautista finished out the day in fifth place with a 1:40.564. While his new teammate Bulega finished out day 1 in eighth spot on the V4 R.