2012 World Superbike TestingLast week, when Althea Ducati’s Carlos Checa participated in a private three-day test at Phillip Island, Australia, the reigning World Superbike Champion topped the time sheets, posting a (unofficial, team-recorded) 1:38.8.
And the Spaniard continued his Phillip Island reign Monday, once again taking the top lap time after the first day of two in the first official test of 2012 World Superbike.Checa, who put in 71 laps testing various Pirelli tires, was the only rider to post under the 1:32 mark Monday. The Ducati 1198 rider lapped Phillip Island at 1:31.947, despite the extra 13.2 lbs. of “extra weight that the Ducati machines are carrying this year in accordance with championship regulations.”To put into perspective, during last year’s Phillip Island official test session, Checa posted a best lap of 1:30.578, which was also the top time of the entire test.Carlos Checa (Althea Ducati 1198 Superbike) says: “I’m pretty happy. We’re still up there with the times, though it seems difficult to improve beyond that point. Today we continued to work on set-up, with the suspension and the electronics, trying to find the best compromise when it comes to performance.“Tomorrow we still have a few small things to work on and we’ll look at the tires again of course as tire choice for this weekend’s races will be extremely important. So tomorrow we’ll get everything in line as much as possible and then our concentration turns to the first races of the season!”Aprilia Racing’s Max Biaggi was the second fastest rider, trailing Checa by 0.185 of a second. The 2010 World SBK Champion took advantage of the warmer afternoon track conditions (79 degrees F), posting a 1:32.132 aboard the Aprilia RSV4 Superbike.Behind Biaggi was BMW Motorrad’s Marco Melandri, who posted a 1:32.232 aboard the S1000RR, a full second faster than his times last week in the private testing.The next six riders all posted within a second of Checa, possible a preview of how tight things will run during the 2012 World Superbike Championship. These riders were Jonathan Rea (Honda, 1:32,379), Leon Haslam (BMW, 1:32.397), Tom Sykes (Kawasaki, 1:32.465), Sylvain Guintoli (Ducati, 1:32.768), Niccola Canepa (1:32.836), Jakub Smrz (Ducati, 1:32.848).Although Haslam was fifth fastest, the Brit did sustain a crash during the morning. Further examination revealed that Haslam fractured his right tibia, which may require surgery.The 2012 World SBK grid will return to Phillip Island Tuesday for the second and final day of official testing ahead of the season opener this Sunday, Feb. 26.2012 World Superbike: Phillip Island Test, Day 1 Results: 1. 7 Checa C. (ESP) Ducati 1098R 1’31.947 2. 3 Biaggi M. (ITA) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1’32.132 3. 33 Melandri M. (ITA) BMW S1000 RR 1’32.232 4. 65 Rea J. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 1’32.379 5. 91 Haslam L. (GBR) BMW S1000 RR 1’32.397 6. 66 Sykes T. (GBR) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1’32.465 7. 50 Guintoli S. (FRA) Ducati 1098R 1’32.768 8. 59 Canepa N. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1’32.836 9. 96 Smrz J. (CZE) Ducati 1098R 1’32.848 10. 17 Lascorz J. (ESP) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1’33.005 11. 2 Camier L. (GBR) Suzuki GSX-R1000 1’33.104 12. 84 Fabrizio M. (ITA) BMW S1000 RR 1’33.141 13. 121 Berger M. (FRA) Ducati 1098R 1’33.246 14. 34 Giugliano D. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1’33.366 15. 4 Aoyama H. (JPN) Honda CBR1000RR 1’33.479 16. 87 Zanetti L. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1’33.566 17. 67 Staring B. (AUS) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1’33.704 18. 44 Salom D. (ESP) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1’33.812 19. 86 Badovini A. (ITA) BMW S1000 RR 1’34.234 20. 19 Davies C. (GBR) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1’34.303 21. 35 De Rosa R. (ITA) Honda CBR1000RR 1’34.400 22. 25 Brookes J. (AUS) Suzuki GSX-R1000 1’34.667 23. 18 Aitchison M. (AUS) BMW S1000 RR 1’35.223
KTM Super ADV R + Lightning Motorcycles’ Richard Hatfield
byMotos and Friends by Ultimate Motorcycle
Hello everyone and welcome once again to Motos and Friends—the weekly Podcast brought to you by the editorial team at Ultimate Motorcycling. My name is Arthur Coldwells.
In this week’s first segment, Editor Don Williams rides KTM’s new 1290 Super Adventure R. This hardcore ADV bike is big, powerful, and a true expert-level machine. Interestingly, it has multiple points of adjustment within its highly capable electronics package, and Don discovered several big surprises where the bike changed personality completely. His is an intriguing look at one of the most capable off road ADV bikes on the market today.
In the second segment, I chat with Richard Hatfield, CEO of Lightning motorcycles. This silicon valley based manufacturer was founded in 2006, and having racked up several notable race victories (including Pikes Peak in 2013 with the late Carlin Dunne on board) Lightning have certainly dominated in racing terms. In another first, Lightning has just announced a new rapid-charging battery technology that may well bring electric motorcycles into becoming real-world, practical transport.
So from all of us here at Motos & Friends… we hope you enjoy this episode!