Razgatlioglu fastest and aiming for lap record, Bautista explains crash

Toprak Razgatlioglu started the opening WorldSBK test of 2023 as he means to go on, after finishing fastest from Alvaro Bautista.
Toprak Razgatlioglu, Yamaha World Superbike Jerez 2023
Toprak Razgatlioglu, Yamaha World Superbike Jerez 2023

The Pata Yamaha rider set a blistering time of 1:38.597s which was just under a tenth clear of the reigning WorldSBK champion.

Looking to reclaim the title following Bautista’s dominant showing in 2022, Razgatlioglu completed a total of 60 laps ahead of today’s second and final day.

Razgatlioglu, who remains in contention to move to MotoGP following this season regardless of if he wins the Superbike title or not, was just a few tenths shy of the lap record, which he’s aiming to beat.

"I enjoyed today after a long time and I’m riding my bike again," Razgatlioglu told WorldSBK.com. "There was very good working [from the team] because we tried many new parts. 

"Finally we are making big improvements because I remember in 2020, the winter test in Jerez, my best time with the race tyres was 38.8s but today I see 38.5s. 

"This is good improvement because 38s is a very fast lap time. I'm going to try for a 37s; okay it’s not easy this lap time but I say why not."

Razgatlioglu also detailed what changes have been made to his R1 as Yamaha look to provide him with a machine that can fight Bautista more regularly on the straights. 

The Turkish star added: "We tried new electronics and worked on acceleration. I’m feeling much better now. We used the old bike and the new bike and I felt really good improving. It’s a good step for the new season." 

Bautista finds improvements with new Panigale V4 R ahead of WorldSBK title defence

Alvaro Bautista, Jerez WorldSBK Tests, 25-26 January
Alvaro Bautista, Jerez WorldSBK Tests, 25-26 January

What was a busy day for Razgatlioglu was also true for Bautista, with the Spaniard testing both the 2022 and brand new 2023 Panigale V4 R bikes.

Content with his opening day, Bautista said the engine from the 2023 model was smoother and more linear than its predecessor. 

"In the morning I compared the 2022 bike to the new one to see the biggest difference and basically I don’t really feel a big difference between both bikes," said Bautista. 

"But the new one, especially with the engine, it seems like the engine is more linear and more gentle, more smooth, so I think I found just an advantage with the new engine, the new bike."

While it was a strong day in terms of performance for Bautista, the Ducati rider did suffer a crash at turn one which was as a result of rapidly closing in on Moto3 rider Ana Carrasco, who was taking part in a track day. 

Bautista added: "I had a small crash in turn one because - I think I had [Ana] Carrasco in front of me but she was like too far [ahead] and when I started to brake I caught her very quickly and had to pick up the bike. 

"I went to the dirty area and I lost the front. It was a very soft crash and fortunately it didn't have any consequences."

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