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RideFast Feb 2020

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South African

South African representation returns to WorldSSP in 2020, as Steven Odendaal (EAB Ten Kate Racing) moves over from the Moto2 World Championship. Back on track and eager to impress in 2020, the 26-yearold set more laps than any other WorldSSP Yamaha rider on his way to second at the end of the day. The Ten Kate Racing team return to the World Supersport grid in 2020 and have 73 wins in their time in the class before; important testing will prove pivotal on whether they can add to that tally. Randy Krummenacher enjoyed a successful day as he got his first wet track time in on the MV Agusta F3 675. The Swiss rider, who clinched the WorldSSP title in 2019, featured inside the top ten on combined times early in the day and was top WorldSSP rider at lunch time, before placing third come the close of business. Krummenacher was second in the race at Jerez in 2019, beaten only by then-teammate, Federico Caricasulo. The GMT94 Yamaha duo of Jules Cluzel and Corentin Perolari were also out on track at Jerez, garnering vital data and track time in tricky conditions in order to be prepared for the 2020 season. Setting 35 laps between them and being split by just 0.195s, Cluzel pipped Perolari and they finished fourth and fifth in their class respectively. The only other two WorldSSP riders on track were Dutchman Jaimie van Sikkelerus (MPM Routz Racing Team), who only took to the track for 22 laps during the afternoon. He was joined on track by fellow Yamaha rider Loris Cresson (OXXO Yamaha Team Toth), who didn’t complete a flying lap. The Belgian rider’s teammate, Peter Sebestyen, was not present at the test, whilst Kawasaki Puccetti Racing were also absent from Jerez. Champion Rea fastest on final day with Razgatlioglu and Redding rounding out the top three on day two. The final day of Jerez testing brought the only sunshine available out to play for a handful of hours before more rain meant that most teams remained in their garages with a couple of hours to go. Steven Odendaal is going to be a top contender in this year’s WSS championship for sure. Johnny Rea back on top... again. With Honda on top of day one, it was Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) and Kawasaki who were on top after doing 19 laps across the two days. Behind him, 2019 rival Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha) and Scott Redding (ARUBA. IT Racing – Ducati), making it three manufacturers inside the top three. There was very little track action across both days for the Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK outfit, as they vowed to keep their reigning WorldSBK champion Jonathan Rea in the box for the entirety of day one, before he ventured out on day two. With little to try because he already knows the ZX-10RR so comprehensively, new teammate Alex Lowes did more work. The WorldSBK race winner experimented with launch control settings and wasn’t worried about the lack of dry time, as he was fast in testing in years gone by but then got to the first round and it had been a different story. Heading to Portugal, Rea is on top and Lowes is fourth. Two-time race winner Toprak Razgatlioglu was in fine form across the test and despite suffering a turn one crash on Wednesday, he bounced back to lead the way for the majority of the second day. However, once Jonathan Rea had gone out, Razgatlioglu was pushed back to second, although just over two tenths behind the Ulsterman. Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha) joined his teammate at the sharp end and completed the top five, 1.7s behind Rea. Making it three manufacturers inside the top three, Scott Redding (Aruba. it Racing – Ducati) took his Ducati Panigale V4 R around the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto track. Having raced at the track more than most of his competitors from his MotoGP paddock days, the 27-yearold British ace had a good run at a circuit he knows well in order to learn the WorldSBKspec of the V4 R’s intricacies. Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) had a tough test and was 15th at the end of it all, crashing twice on the first day and completing less than 30 laps on day two. Day one saw the highly awaited first public appearance of the all-new Honda CBR1000RR-R and it ended the day on top of the WorldSBK pile in the hands of Leon Haslam (HRC Team). On Thursday, the bike couldn’t quite replicate the position, but it was a good indicator of what the bike was capable of in drying conditions. The ‘Pocket Rocket’ finished in sixth come the end of play and hailed the support of HRC, giving him the confidence to achieve great things. For Bautista, the objective is still to find a good base setting and to learn the technicalities of an in-line four-cylinder motorcycle, something he has never ridden before. Bautista ended day two in eighth. In seventh place was the first of the Independent riders and Loris Baz (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha). The 26-year-old WorldSBK race winner was right in the mix across the two days of testing, testing with the new 2020 Yamaha YZF R1. The wet weather running was confirmation that the team have improved the setup of the bike in general, whilst they also practiced race starts and refined their electronics. Along with Baz in the top ten were other Independent riders were Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Team GoEleven) and Federico Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Junior Team), the latter of which suffered two crashes. Outside the top 10 was Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) in eleventh, as the BMW squad didn’t try too much during the second day. Combined with teammate Eugene Laverty, the two did 65 laps in total across the second day with a primary focus on Laverty, who hailed the chassis but has engine desires in order to move forward. With two chassis to test, the Shaun Muir Racing team will be busy with more development at Portimao; ‘Norge’ was 18th. Toprak Razgatlioglu Scott Redding ORELAC Racing Verdnatura were up in 12th place with WorldSBK rookie Maximilian Scheib, who quietly impressed around the WorldSBK paddock at Jerez. The Chilean rider’s main aim was to familiarise his way with the ZX-10RR, whilst placing fourth out of the Independent riders. Third on day one, it was 13th for Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Junior Team) on day two, whilst Sandro Cortese (Barni Racing Team) was 14th on his deputising duty. The German rider, who liked the feeling from his Ducati Panigale V4 R, is still without a ride on the 2020 grid. Sylvain Barrier (Brixx Performance) was 16th on his Ducati, ahead of Leandro Mercado (Motocorsa Racing). Krummenacher heads MV Agusta 1-2 The title defence is off to a good start for the Swiss rider, although there’s plenty of unpredictability in the air… The FIM Supersport World Championship testing at Jerez has been completed, with the top riders taking to the circuit on the final day of action. With sunshine blazing through in the middle of the day, times improved significantly, and it was Randy Krummenacher (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) who clinched top slot aboard his MV Agusta F3 675, whilst teammate Raffaele De Rosa and Jules Cluzel (GMT94 Yamaha) completed the top three. De Rosa was one of the first riders out on track and soon set the early pace, but teammate Randy Krummenacher was soon on the pace and got ahead of the Italian before the weather closed in on the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto. The Swiss rider needs to focus on garnering as much track time as possible with his new bike, whilst De Rosa looked to push on and challenge his new teammate. Jules Cluzel was up at the sharp end of things on the overall timesheets early on before slipping down later on, finishing third in the class. Cluzel didn’t manage to get out on slick tyres. Behind them was South African rookie Steven Odendaal (EAB Ten Kate Racing) and was pushing on in the morning. Entering his first season in the class and with very little dry track time to help him, it will be an interesting opening few rounds for the former CEV Moto2 Junior Champion. Corentin Perolari (GMT94 Yamaha) was fifth in the WorldSSP class and, like teammate Cluzel, didn’t venture out on slick rubber, whilst Jaimie van Sikkelerus (MPM Routz Racing Team was sixth. Loris Cresson (OXXO Yamaha Team Toth) elected to stay off the Jerez circuit.