Taylor Mackenzie says his Spanish pre-season testing with the new-look Bennetts Suzuki squad 'couldn't have gone any better' after beating his previous best lap times at Almeria and Cartagena.

The 2016 National Superstock 1000 champion got BSB testing underway with the Hawk Racing-run Bennetts Suzuki but without new team-mate Sylvain Guintoli who missed the Cartagena test due to personal reasons.

The British rider spent both tests experimenting with a number of standard parts while adapting to BSB electronics and no traction control. Having established a comfortable base set-up with the all-new Suzuki GSX-R1000, Mackenzie was able to produce his personal best lap times at both Spanish circuits which left the 24-year-old beaming heading back home.

"The test was mega, I love the bike, it's so good and the five days couldn't really have gone any better," Mackenzie said. "If someone said beforehand that this was how it would have gone I'd have bitten their hand off.

"I spent the first part of the test just learning to ride with BSB-spec electronics and without traction control, as that's different for me for this year. And then we were fine-tuning chassis setup. For things like that it's good to be having a second year with the team as we know how each other works and we're just picking up where we left off in that regard.

"I did plenty of laps and set personal best lap times at both circuits. It was also good to ride with Sylvain at Almeria as I can learn a lot from him. Hopefully the weather will be kind at the Donington test and we'll work on getting my bike setup for the first race weekend, but I'm really excited to get back on it."

Mackenzie was joined by Bennetts Suzuki's new National Superstock 1000 challenger Richard Cooper plus roads campaigner Michael Dunlop.

The official MCE British Superbike test day takes place at Donington Park on 22nd March before the Leicestershire circuit hosts the opening round of the 2017 championship on the 31 March-2 April.

 

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