Jonathan Rea overhauled Leon Haslam on his final lap of a rain hit opening practice session at Portimao circuit this morning. After heavy overnight rain no one ventured out on track for over one hour until Sylvan Guintoli braved the elements on his Alstare Suzuki.
Aprilia’s Leon Camier looked smooth and impressive to set the early pace before Aussie Chris Vermeulen took control at the front. In the final minutes Leon Haslam and Jonathan Rea upped their pace to finish the session in first and second place respectively.
Speaking to MCN Rea said: “I know the bike is good in the wet and I don’t lack any confidence in these type of conditions so I wasn’t actually planning on going out this morning. But my team-mate Max was out on track and gradually more and more riders went out so I thought I’d better do some laps.
“The level of grip was actually really good especially since the last time I rode here in the wet. I was lapping five seconds faster than I had which is significant.”
The Xerox Ducati pairing of Noriyuki Haga and Michel Fabrizio plus Max Biaggi and Shane Byrne elected to sit out of the session.