2019 Jerez WorldSBK Thursday Test Times: Rea Smashes Lap Record On Race Rubber

The WorldSBK field has gotten the first test of 2019 under their collective belts, and christened the new asphalt at the Jerez track. As you might expect, it was Jonathan Rea who was fastest, just shy of Marco Melandri's Superpole lap record from 2017. The fact that Rea set his time on race rubber may well give his rivals pause for thought. The KRT Kawasaki rider had by far the fastest pace of the WorldSBK riders, racking up a total of 14 laps of 1'39, while his rivals could manage no more than a handful.

Although Rea was the fastest of the WorldSBK riders, he was a fraction slower than HRC test rider Stefan Bradl, at Jerez with the WorldSBK field testing the Honda RC213V MotoGP bike before it gets shipped back to Malaysia for the first test at Sepang. 

Alex Lowes was second quickest on the Pata Yamaha, two tenths off the time of Rea, and a tenth quicker than Rea's KRT Kawasaki teammate Leon Haslam. Alvaro Bautista was the fastest Ducati, half a second slower than Rea, and three tenths faster than Toprak Razgatlioglu. Sandro Cortese was the second fastest Yamaha rider, finishing just ahead of Michael van der Mark and Marco Melandri.

Although Tom Sykes noted the 15th fastest time on the official timing, but the SMR team was having issues getting the official Dorna transponder to talk to the BMW S1000RR electronics package. A crash in the morning meant Sykes lost a lot of time, as spares for the brand new bike are still a little limited. Sandro Cortese was another crasher, while Chaz Davies spent very little time on track after hurting his back in a crash on Wednesday.

In the WorldSSP class, it was Federico Caricasulo who once again led the way on the Yamaha YZF-R6, finishing ahead of his former teammate Lucas Mahias, now riding a Kawasaki. Raffaele De Rosa was third fastest on the MV Agusta 675 F3.

Overall impressions of the new surface were positive, riders telling Dorna WorldSBK commentator Steve English that the issues at Turn 1 and Turn 6 had been completely solved. The surface was no longer breaking up at Turn 8, but the riders were complaining about bumps at the fast left hander leading into the stadium section.

The paddock now packs up and heads to Portimao, where they will test on on Sunday and Monday.

Times from Thursday:

Pos No Class Rider Bike Time Diff Prev
1 2 mgp Stefan Bradl Honda RC213V 1:39.152    
2 1 sbk Jonathan Rea Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:39.160    
3 22 sbk Alex Lowes Yamaha YZF-R1 1:39.372 0.212 0.212
4 91 sbk Leon Haslam Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:39.502 0.342 0.130
5 19 sbk Alvaro Bautista Ducati Panigale V4R 1:39.620 0.460 0.118
6 54 sbk Toprak Razgatlioglu Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:39.942 0.782 0.322
7 11 sbk Sandro Cortese Yamaha YZF-R1 1:40.075 0.915 0.133
8 60 sbk Michael van der Mark Yamaha YZF-R1 1:40.145 0.985 0.070
9 33 sbk Marco Melandri Yamaha YZF-R1 1:40.469 1.309 0.324
10 21 sbk Michael R Rinaldi Ducati Panigale V4R 1:40.540 1.380 0.071
11 7 sbk Chaz Davies Ducati Panigale V4R 1:40.621 1.461 0.081
12 36 sbk Leandro Mercado Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:40.794 1.634 0.173
13 50 sbk Eugene Laverty Ducati Panigale V4R 1:40.879 1.719 0.085
14 81 sbk Jordi Torres Kawasaki ZX-10R 1:41.066 1.906 0.187
15 66 sbk Tom Sykes BMW S1000RR 1:41.206 2.046 0.140
16 28 sbk Markus Reiterberger BMW S1000RR 1:41.231 2.071 0.025
17 52 sbk Alessandro Delbianco Honda CBR1000RR 1:42.353 3.193 1.122
1 64 ssp Federico Caricasulo Yamaha YZF-R6 1:42.529    
2 44 ssp Lukas Mahias Kawasaki ZX-6R 1:42.751 0.222 0.222
3 3 ssp Raffaele De Rosa MV Agusta F3 675 1:42.771 0.242 0.020
4 121 ssp Randy Krummenacher Yamaha YZF-R6 1:42.898 0.369 0.127
5 16 ssp Jules Cluzel Yamaha YZF-R6 1:43.300 0.771 0.402
6 78 ssp Hikari Okubo Kawasaki ZX-6R 1:43.404 0.875 0.104
7 94 ssp Corentin Perolari Yamaha YZF-R6 1:43.858 1.329 0.454
8 86 ssp Ayrton Badovini Kawasaki ZX-6R 1:44.564 2.035 0.706
9 122 ssp Federico Fuligni MV Agusta F3 675 1:45.144 2.615 0.580
10 47 ssp Rob Hartog Kawasaki ZX-6R 1:45.394 2.865 0.250
11 10 ssp Nacho Calero Kawasaki ZX-6R 1:46.054 3.525 0.660
12 6 ssp María Herrera Yamaha YZF-R6 1:46.957 4.428 0.903
Round Number: 
Tweet Button: 

Back to top


Comparing times between classes is a tricky business. A lot of factors play into the lap time, and the nature of the track makes a huge difference. There is nowhere a MotoGP bike can use its speed at Jerez (I don't think they crack 300 km/h there, as opposed to 340+ at Qatar, Barcelona, Mugello, etc), and a lot of the track is about corner speed, with relatively slow speed corners, and some hard acceleration. So a MotoGP bike can never use its advantages there, and it's much more about the rider

Contrast Jerez with a track like Qatar, where both series ride, and the gap between MotoGP and WorldSSP is more like 8 seconds, because MotoGP bikes are much closer to their engineering limits at the circuit.

But also, don't underestimate the difference that even 3 seconds a lap make. It sounds close, until you watch the gap grow lap after lap. 10 laps into a race, and you are waiting half a minute for the slower bike to pass...

talk about getting a pile of data. I supose if you've tested all the new parts, there's no need to come in and talk about them, or there was a lot of bike switching and they'll talk about it later.