After taking the Panigale V4 R to track for the first time at Aragon (Spain) with Chaz Davies, the Aruba.it Racing - Ducati team resumed action at full capacity in Jerez (Spain) with Alvaro Bautista, at his debut in WorldSBK, alongside the Welshman.
In sunny conditions, with temperatures around 15 degrees, Bautista and Davies clocked 65 and 49 laps respectively. The Spaniard's priority was to get acquainted with the Panigale V4 R, and he showed good chemistry with both the bike and the team to post the second-best time of the day with a 1:39.979. Davies, who only had one more day of testing in dry conditions compared with his teammate, also adopted a progressive approach to finish in third position with a 1:40.202.
The Aruba.it Racing - Ducati team will resume action tomorrow at 10:00 local time (CET) for one last day of tests before the winter break.
Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #19)
"It felt like the first day at school and, while it's still very early, I've been enjoying the bike quite a bit. For sure, the V4 R is different compared with the Desmosedici, in terms of engine, chassis and tires, but the character is similar. You need to ride it differently though, a bit smoother. We did not make many changes, just small adjustments, and we basically just tried to get as much kilometers as possible under our belt to get acquainted with the whole team. I was surprised to be this fast, but we must not get carried away and we'll keep following the same plan tomorrow."
Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #7)
"We're figuring out the new bike step by step and, while it's still early, the start has been positive. The package definitely has great potential. I'm very confident we have a better weapon to fight with. That said, we just need time. We're trying to walk before we can run, because there is a lot to learn about the V4 R and it's easy to get carried away. So, I've been cautious, trying only a few changes throughout the day. We have to find the nuances and differences with the previous bike, and put all the experience together, which is the path we're going to follow tomorrow as well."