World Superbike: Yamaha Tests Aragon

2011 Yamaha WSBK

After taking his double victory at Monza World Superbike, Eugene Laverty didn’t have much time to celebrate.

The Brit and his teammate Marco Melandri were straight off to Aragon in Spain with the Yamaha World Superbike team for two days of testing Thursday and Friday. The Aragon circuit, which will make its debut on the World Superbike calendar on June 12, is new to Laverty, and Melandri has only ridden the track once.

Although the track wasn’t as warm as expected for this time of year, the Yamaha World Superbike riders worked on learning the layout of the Spanish circuit, and began playing with various setups on the Yamaha YZF-R1 superbikes.

Yamaha reports the first day of testing was concentrated principally on getting acquainted with the new track which offers plenty of grip, tight corners and long straights. On day two Laverty proceeded to test the tyre wear, working on race simulation where he completed a series of consistent laps, in order to find a suitable set-up which reduces wear and tear on a track that’s particularly harsh on rubber.

Both Yamaha World Superbike riders worked on their R1s, modifying the chassis set up, gearbox and electronics. Melandri concentrated on evaluating the rear of his machine, gathering necessary data to make improvements.Both Yamaha WSB riders come away from the Spanish track in Aragon confident of having completed two successful days testing, Yamaha says.

Eugene Laverty (Yamaha World Superbike Team R1) says: “I like Aragon, it’s an interesting one, yet not simple at all. I just wanted to learn the track and I’m glad we had this opportunity. It was tricky to get good speed in due to the fast change of direction.

“I worked a lot on improving my lining and adjusting my riding style to suit the flow of the track. The bike was working very well though and I’m pretty sure that we can head to the race here next month with confidence.”

Marco Melandri (Yamaha World Superbike R1) says: “We worked very hard over the last two days. I had some problems with the bike in Monza and that’s become clearer now in Aragon. I suffered a lack of stability on exiting curves but we started working on solving the problem and the input from this track has been extremely useful. We have a lot of work to do still, but I’m definitely more confident and I’m glad we had the opportunity to test here.”