Jerez World Superbike Test, Day 2: Sykes Leaves Jerez Test As Fastest, Ducatis Impress

If the first day of the combined WSBK test was hampered by a wet track at the start, on Wednesday, it was fog which delayed the action. The fog blanketed the track at 10am, when the track was due to open, but it lifted quickly in the warmth of the Andalusian sun. An extra ten minutes was tacked on to the end of the day, to compensate for the loss of the hour or so in the morning.

It may have been a different day, but the timesheets still had the same leader. Kawasaki's Tom Sykes continued to dominate the timesheets, becoming the first WSBK rider to lap the track in under 1'40, posting a lap of 1'39.924, three tenths under the pole record at the track. The two factory Ducatis were close behind, Davide Giuliano impressing with a 1'40.047, Chaz Davies finishing third six hundredths of a second slower than his teammate. 

Nicky Hayden's adaptation to WSBK is progressing well, the American beating his Ten Kate Honda teammate by under a tenth of a second and finishing with the fourth fastest time. Michael van der Mark was fifth, ahead of Xavi Fores on the Barni Racing Ducati. Jonathan Rea was uncharacteristically slow, ending the day in seventh without ever chasing a really hot lap. The Kawasaki man ended just ahead of the Pata Yamaha of Sylvain Guintoli, Alex Lowes considerably slower, still struggling with a shoulder injury.

Australian newcomer Josh Brookes made a big step forward on the Milwaukee BMW, ending with the 10th time, but lapping two seconds quicker than on Tuesday. Leon Camier put the MV Agusta into 11th, while Brookes' teammate Karel Abraham ended in twelfth.

In the World Supersport class, it was Kenan Sofuoglu who was fastest once again, extending his lead over his teammate Randy Krummenacher to nearly half a second. Lorenzo Zanetti was third fastest on the MV Agusta, while Jules Cluzel is still some way off the pace, ending the day in fourth, 1.7 seconds behind Sofuoglu.

Times from Jerez:

World Superbike
Pos No Rider Bike Time Diff Prev
1 66 Tom Sykes Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:39.924    
2 34 Davide Giugliano Ducati 1199R 1:40.047 0.123 0.123
3 7 Chaz Davies Ducati 1199R 1:40.110 0.186 0.063
4 69 Nicky Hayden Honda CBR1000RR 1:40.534 0.610 0.424
5 60 Michael van der Mark Honda CBR1000RR 1:40.601 0.677 0.067
6 12 Xavi Fores Ducati 1199R 1:40.761 0.837 0.160
7 65 Jonathan Rea Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:40.856 0.932 0.095
8 50 Sylvain Guintoli Yamaha YZF-R1 1:41.018 1.094 0.162
9 22 Alex Lowes Yamaha YZF-R1 1:41.361 1.437 0.343
10 25 Josh Brookes BMW S1000RR 1:41.826 1.902 0.465
11 2 Leon Camier MV Agusta F4 1:42.182 2.258 0.356
12 17 Karel Abraham BMW S1000RR 1:42.628 2.704 0.446
13 20 Sylvain Barrier Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:42.886 2.962 0.258
14 11 Saeed Al Sulaiti Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:45.007 5.083 2.121
World Supersport
Pos No Rider Bike Time Diff Prev
1 1 Kenan Sofuoglu Kawasaki ZX-6R 1:43.091    
2 21 Randy Krummenacher Kawasaki ZX-6R 1:43.582 0.491 0.491
3 87 Lorenzo Zanetti MV Agusta F3 1:44.278 1.187 0.696
4 16 Jules Cluzel MV Agusta F3 1:44.802 1.711 0.524
5 55 Ilya Mihalchick Kawasaki ZX-6R 1:44.938 1.847 0.136
6 63 Zulfahmi Khairuddin Kawasaki ZX-6R 1:45.637 2.546 0.699
7 10 Nacho Calero Kawasaki ZX-6R 1:46.309 3.218 0.672
STK 1000
Pos No Rider Bike Time Diff Prev
1 36 Tati Mercado Ducati 1199R 1:42.641    
2 112 Mike Rinaldi Ducati 1199R 1:42.969 0.328 0.328
3 111 Jeremy Guarnoni Yamaha YZF-R1 1:44.044 1.403 1.075
4 23 Christophe Ponsson Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:44.993 2.352 0.949
Pos No Rider Bike Time Diff Prev
1 77 James Ellison Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:42.442    
2 160 Peter Hickman Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:43.420 0.978 0.978


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Excited about the upcoming season. I wish everyone would stop being so nice to each other in WSBK though. The last best feud was Sykes and Baz. I loved it! There is nothing wrong with duking it out off track as well as long as people can shake hands at the end of their careers. It makes racing so much more exciting when the stakes are higher. The only people to manage to get around that was Spies and Haga, their on track battles said enough for each of them. Thats seriously rare. Ill always hold a special place in my heart for that 09 season.

I'm worried Nicky will be a 4th place rider with the machinery he's on all season behind Ducati and Kawasaki. REALLY hope I'm wrong.

I'm also really looking forward to WSBK this year. I think Nicky's progress is looking really good considering how much slower his bike is and the fact that he is with a new team on an unfamiliar bike. He probably won't be winning the Championship this year but next year with the new bike...
I really hope Vale jumps to WSBK eventually. I think if they had both Vale and Nicky then they might even be more popular than MOTOGP.

Honestly, if Nicky can consistently rack up fourth places, on a bike that was originally released eight years ago, in his first season, then I think that's a success.

Here's hoping that Honda will release something great for 2017.