Despite very different conditions from yesterday’s opening day, Hannspree Ten Kate Honda’s Jonathan Rea topped the timing sheets in both today’s World Superbike test sessions at Portimao in Portugal.
Heavy rain this morning meant most riders remained in their team garages, with Rea only venturing out for ten laps in the final half-hour of the session, going quickest on his final lap.
In the final World Superbike track action of 2009, Hannspree Ten Kate Honda’s Jonathan Rea set the fourth fastest unofficial time in a two-day test, which concluded this afternoon at Valencia in Spain.
Despite a small crash yesterday, the 22-year-old, who finished his debut WSBK season in championship fifth place, completed 190 laps of the 4.005km Ricardo Tormo circuit with a best time of 1’34.2s as he tested a combination of new swingarm, front forks and electronics on his 2009 Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade.
The Hannspree Ten Kate Honda team today completed a two-day end-of-season test at Portimao in Portugal where the 2009 World Superbike and Supersport championships were concluded last Sunday.
Jonathan Rea was in scintillating form on his Honda CBR1000RR, setting – on different Pirelli race rubber, not available for the final two races of the season – a fastest time of 1’41.7s around the 4.59km Portimao circuit.
The Hannspree Ten Kate Honda team has signed Max Neukirchner to ride its Honda CBR1000RR in the World Superbike championship for the 2010 season.
The 26-year-old from Stollberg in eastern Germany has spent much of his career on Honda machinery and already has five years’ experience in the World Superbike championship with 10 podium finishes, one with Honda in 2005; he also took two wins in 2008 on his way to fifth place in the series.
Team Suzuki Alstare Brux rider Max Neukirchner is on the mend after his horrific crash on the opening lap of the first race at Monza. On Sunday evening he underwent a six hour operation to repair the damaged bones in his right leg and although he lost quite a bit of blood, a transfusion was not deemed necessary.
According to the doctors, the operation passed without any complications and there are no reasons why Max will not make a full and successful recovery.
Ben Spies made it an impressive five Superpole triumphs in five races with a blistering lap in the decisive qualifying session at the Autodromo di Monza. The Yamaha World Superbike team’s Texan rookie star, who received his Superpole trophy from Troy Bayliss, totally disintegrated the Australian champion’s previous record mark of 1’44.931 to clinch the pole with a time of 1 minute 44.073 seconds.