2012 Phillip Island World Superbike
Between this week and last week, the Aprilia Racing Team of Max Biaggi and Eugene Laverty were on the Phillip Island circuit in Australia for some private and official World Superbike tests.
During the tests, the team were able to fine-tune the RSV4 superbike, and also witness the competitiveness of the other teams ahead of this weekend’s opening round of the 2012 WSBK Championship at the same Australian circuit.
The 2010 World SBK Champion Biaggi was near the top throughout the tests, and finished the official test Tuesday in fifth overall, just under a half-second slower than the leader, Althea Ducati’s Carlos Checa.
As for his new teammate Laverty, the Northern Irishman suffered a crash during the private sessions last week, fracturing his third finger on his clutch hand. Due to the injury, he missed out on the official testing this Monday and Tuesday.
But regardless of the injury, Laverty is slated to compete in this weekend’s opening round of the 2012 World Superbike Championship at Phillip Island, Round 1 of 14.
Max Biaggi (Aprilia Racing Team RSV4 Superbike) says: “These days of testing have been very important for us, having a completely new team we need to try out the mechanisms and work out any kinks in the way we work. I’m rather satisfied. We really tried everything on a track which is certainly not one of our favorites.
“The lap times were good, considering the fact that I wasn’t pushing for maximum performance, but I was looking for a set-up which will allow us to be fast over the long distance. In any case, the race will put us to a hard test. Our rivals have shown speed and consistency, so we will really have to fight tooth and nail right from the beginning of the season to aim for a good result.”
Eugene Laverty (Aprilia Racing Team RSV4 Superbike) says: “My season has suffered a minor setback following my hand injury in the test last week. Fortunately we have had more than a week off the bike which has allowed the hand to improve a huge amount.
“I have flown my doctor out to Australia to help with my rehabilitation and we have been working constantly on my injury for five hours every day. I feel confident that I will be fit to ride but I guess I will have to wait until Friday to find out. Honestly I feel that Carlos Checa and my teammate Max are out of reach unless I am 100 percent but it won’t stop me from trying.”