Phillip Island hosted the final Official Test for World Superbike ahead of the season opener with Toprak Razgatlioglu ending the day fastest after a rain-affected second session.
The opening day of the 2020 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship Official Test came to an end with Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Official Team) leading the field after posting a time in the 1’30 bracket. In a frantic session where almost every rider improved on their morning times, drops of rain, red flags and constant unpredictability made for an action-packed opening day of testing.
Toprak Razgatlioglu had been top of the last test at Portimao and he consolidated his position as ‘man to beat’ ahead of the opening weekend, slamming in a strong lap time that edged him clear of Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team). Toprak, like teammate Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Official Team), had been focusing on some small upgrades to the bike and trying to find the balance between performance and durability of the tyres. Van der Mark himself was one of just two riders to not improve in the afternoon, finishing seventh come the end of the day.
Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK), who was looking to refine set-ups of his bike after working on chassis and electronics in the previous tests at Jerez and Portimao, finished second in the classification for the day, with just 0.022s separating Sykes from Razgatlioglu. Sykes’ teammate Eugene Laverty (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) was in eighth place and less than a second off of the top time, focusing on race runs and aiming to bag as much dry running as possible.
It was even closer between Sykes and Loris Baz (Ten Kate Yamaha Racing) in third place as he was just 0.015s from Sykes and 0.037s from Razgatlioglu. Baz has been a stand-out performer in pre-season testing and is hoping that his pace translates into the races. Baz was subsequently top Independent rider too as Yamaha topped and tailed the top three.