Italian Aprilia rider Lorenzo Savadori has produced the first shock of the 2018 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship by setting the fastest time in the second practice session at Phillip Island’s season-opening round.
Like fellow countryman Marco Melandri (Ducati) this morning, the 24-year-old Savadori produced his best lap at the death knell (1m30.407s) to bump British charger Leon Camier (Honda, 1:30.722) out of top spot.
Savadori finished 11th in the 201 WorldSBK title
Savadori’s teammate and two-time Phillip Island race winner Eugene Laverty (1:30.746) finished in third position, with the top 10 completed by Kawasaki’s Tom Sykes (1:30.882), Melandri (1:30.973), world champion Jonathan Rea (1:31.047), Michael van der Mark (Yamaha, 1:31.114), Xavi Fores (Ducati, 1:31.295), Chaz Davies (Ducati, 1:31.523) and American rookie Jake Gagne (Honda, 1:31.689).
With wet conditions expected to make their way across the Phillip Island Grand Prix for this afternoon’s third practice session, times in FP2 could be the ones which determine who goes straight through to Superpole 2 qualifying tomorrow afternoon – the battle for grid positions at the sharp end of the 22-rider field.
WorldSBK returnee Loris Baz (BMW) and Alex Lowes (Yamaha) both crashed in FP2 and, if the heavens do open this afternoon, they will have to fight through Superpole 1 tomorrow to get a slice of the Superpole 2 action. The fastest two riders from Superpole 1 go through to Superpole 2.
Meanwhile, Troy Herfoss (Honda, 1:32.683) was the leading Aussie in FP2, in 18th, immediately in front of Wayne Maxwell (Yamaha, 1:32.723) and Daniel Falzon (Yamaha, 1:33.124).
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