At the end of the first two free practice sessions for the Portuguese Round of the Superbike World Championship, scheduled to take place this weekend at the Algarve circuit, both Aruba.it Racing - Ducati riders were classified inside the top 10, with Bautista in second place and Davies in tenth.
Bautista, second in the morning’s FP1 session behind his rival Rea (Kawasaki), topped the timesheets in the second session, but as the temperatures were higher in the afternoon, he was unable to further improve on the time of 1’42.009 set in the morning, and had to settle for second in the combined standings.
Davies, eleventh in the morning, was instead one of the few riders to improve in FP2 (fifth quickest) and he finished the day in tenth place with a best lap of 1’42.649.
Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #19) – 2nd (1’42.009)
“Today was a very positive day because, as I had problems with my shoulder in the tests two weeks ago, it was important to verify my physical condition and luckily everything went OK as the pain was a lot less. In the afternoon we did more laps than in the morning because it was important to work on the setup and tyre choice in the hot conditions that for sure we will also find in the race. I’m optimistic, I’ve got a good feeling with my Panigale V4 R and physically I feel quite good.”
Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #7) – 10th (1’42.649)
“Today all in all it wasn’t bad, we got back into the swing of things and lapped with a good pace. But it seems like the grip is definitely down compared to the test and the track is slower because people were doing better lap times two weeks ago. Today we just tried to focus on the set-up details for these conditions. We’ve got some ideas for tomorrow to improve the stability of the bike and the grip with the high track surface temperature.”