Mandalika WorldSBK Round Up: Steve English On Toprak's Return, Locatelli's Rise, Racing Incidents, And Harsh Words Exchanged
Two rounds into the WorldSBK season and it already feels that the back is broken on the season. After the shortest winter in memory, some team personnel said that they had just a few days off over Christmas, it’s been a hectic time for the paddock. This week will be a rare chance to catch their breath but with tests in Aragon, Montmelo and Assen on the schedule for teams it’s clear that there’s still plenty of work to be done!
After a hard winter, Indonesia should have been a reward for much of the paddock. With the track sitting on the stunning coastline of Lombok it’s a perfect holiday destination. Good weather, nice hotels, white sand and local cuisine makes for a perfect destination. Unfortunately, that postcard image didn’t quite work out for most teams. Food poisoning seemed to affect half the paddock and the weekend became a test of endurance on and off track.
It’s been a long, hard winter and this was the culmination of that for many...
Toprak wins again
Yamaha know the challenge they are facing in 2023; a horde of fast Ducati’s that can be competitive everywhere. For Toprak Razgatlioglu that means he has to be perfect week in and week out. Australia was far from that objective for the Turkish star, and with Alvaro Bautista having claimed five wins from six races it was critical that Toprak would win at least one race in Indonesia.