Michael Ruben Rinaldi topped the opening Portimao WorldSBK practice ahead of GRT Yamaha rider Garrett Gerloff.

Despite being held up in the final corner by fellow Yamaha rider Christophe Ponsson, Toprak Razgatlioglu’s first flying lap saw him set a time of 1:41.532s which was a tenth quicker than Jonathan Rea who was in clean air.

Razgatlioglu was then on course to better his time by nearly half a second, the only rider set to improve by such a margin, before a big moment at the final corner saw the reigning Superbike champion abandon the lap. 

The Turkish star did eventually lower the benchmark time as he set a 1:41.249s, with Rea also improving in order to go +0.107s down on Razgatlioglu. 

It was a slow start to FP1 for leader of the WorldSBK Standings Alvaro Bautista, as the Aruba.it Ducati rider was over a second down following his first few laps.

While sector one was continuing to pose problems for Bautista, the Spanaird was able to reduce the deficit to Razgatlioglu throughout the remainder of the lap, thus moving up to fourth place with half the session completed.

Gerloff also found pace to go fifth quickest, before suffering a big moment on the front-end heading into turn one.

2022 World Superbike Portimao, Portugal - Free Practice Results (1)
PosRiderNatTeamTime
1Michael RinaldiITAAruba.It Racing Ducati1:40.965s
2Garrett GerloffUSAGRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team+0.117s
3Toprak RazgatliogluTURPATA Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK+0.284s
4Jonathan ReaGBRKawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK+0.391s
5Alvaro BautistaSPAAruba.It Racing Ducati+0.547s
6Alex LowesGBRKawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK+0.721s
7Andrea LocatelliITAPATA Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK+0.795s
8Scott ReddingGBRBMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team+0.981s
9Xavi ViergeSPATeam HRC WorldSBK+1.007s
10Iker LecuonaSPATeam HRC WorldSBK+1.134s
11Axel BassaniITAMotocorsa Ducati+1.226s
12Loris BazFRABonovo Action BMW+1.250s
13Philipp OettlGERGoEleven Ducati+1.330s
14Roberto TamburiniITAMotoxracing Yamaha WorldSBK Team+1.544s
15Michael Van Der MarkSPABMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team+1.587s
16Eugene LavertyIRLBonovo Action BMW+1.605s
17Leon HaslamGBRPedercini Kawasaki+1.805s
18Jake GagneUSAFresh N Lean Attack Yamaha+2.114s
19Lucas MahiasFRAPuccetti Kawasaki+2.181s
20Christophe PonssonFRAGil Motor Sport Yamaha+2.314s
21Hafizh SyahrinMALMIE Honda Racing+2.392s
22Marvin FritzGERYART Yamaha+2.450s
23Leandro MercadoARGMIE Honda Racing+2.451s
24Kohta NozaneJPNGRT Yamaha+2.657s
25Luca BernardiSMBarni Spark Ducati Team+3.489s
26Oliver KonigCZEOrelac Racing Kawasaki+4.682s

Lucas Mahias, who looks set to leave WorldSBK and return to WorldSSP following the 2022 season, was surprisingly spotted without sponsors on his Puccetti Kawasaki machine.

Enjoying a strong start to the weekend after scoring just two points in Catalunya, Scott Redding was a consistent top five challenger as Razgatlioglu and Rea remained at the front of the field.

Gerloff, who was over two tenths down on his latest effort, then produced a brilliant final sector to leapfrog Razgatlioglu and take over at the front. 

The American then improved again on his next lap as he extended the gap from himself to Razgatlioglu to +0.167s.

Like Gerloff, Rinaldi proved to be extremely strong in the final sector as he jumped from seventh to first with a first sub 1m 41s lap.

Portimao WorldSBK Records: 

Fastest lap: Toprak Razgatlioglu TUR Pata Yamaha 1:40.219s

2021 Portimao Winners:

Race 1: Toprak Razgatlioglu TUR Pata Yamaha

Superpole Race: Michael Van Der Mark NED BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team

Race 2: Jonathan Rea GBR Kawasaki Racing Team

There was a late fall for Mahias as the French rider went down at turn three.

Two riders making their final appearances of the season at Portimao are Ponsson and Roberto Tamburini as the pair won’t be participating in the non-European rounds in Argentina, Indonesia and Australia.

Portimao Weekend Schedule:

Friday 

Free Practice 1: 10:30-11:15

Free Practice 2: 15:00-15:45

Saturday

Free Practice 3: 09:00-09:30

Superpole: 11:10-11:25

Race 1: 14:00

Sunday 

Warm-up: 09:00-09:15

Superpole Race: 11:00

Race 2: 14:00