WSB testing: Bautista crashes as Ten Kate returns

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Poor weather seems to follow World Superbikes at the moment. After the snow of Assen and rain of Imola, both of which caused race cancellations, more rain affected proceedings as Ducati organised a test attended by most teams at Misano in Italy last week. It did not go according to plan as Alvaro Bautista suffered an accident. 

As this was not an Official Test organised by Dorna, no lap times were declared, although conditions were changeable across Wednesday and Thursday.

Bautista appeared to walk away unharmed from his high-speed off at Turn 13, the last of the rapid right-handers leading to the Carro hairpin, this being the first big crash the Spaniard has suffered since moving from MotoGP. 

The test marked the popular return of Ten Kate, the Dutch team back in the paddock with a Yamaha R1 following its parting of ways with Honda at the end of 2018. Loris Baz crashed twice, but was pleased overall: "We were configuring basic things like foot rest position, the fairing and so on," the Frenchman said, disappointed by the weather. "The team is getting used to all the systems, just finding our way."

Fresh from his BSB podium success at Donington, Xavi Fores was back on a World Superbike for the first time since the end of last year. The Spaniard covered for the injured Leon Camier and was rumoured to be racing in Jerez this weekend, only for Moriwaki Honda to announce soon after that Yuki Takahashi (who also tested at Misano) will race alongside Ryuichi Kiyonari.

Tom Sykes was annoyed that conditions prevented a proper test of new BMW components, while Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea missed half of Day 1, the World Champion explaining: "On Wednesday I was in bed until lunchtime with bad flu, but I felt a bit better on Thursday. We tried a difference balance, different fork settings and, most importantly, a new riding position which worked well."

WorldSBK gets back to racing this weekend as Jerez returns after a year off.

Bridewell and Takahashi sub for Laverty and Camier

Tommy Bridewell will race again for Go Eleven Ducati at Jerez this weekend as Eugene Laverty continues to recover from his double wrist-breaking Imola crash. Leon Camier is also missing Spain, the Moriwaki Honda rider substituted for by Japan’s Yuki Takahashi. Camier suffered ligament damage in his left shoulder after a qualifying incident; he struck Sandro Cortese’s GRT Yamaha which is claimed to have crashed on Michael Ruben Rinaldi’s oil.

Two Supersport 300 races in Jerez

This weekend’s Spanish Round will feature two Supersport 300 World Championship Main Races following the cancellation last time out in Italy due to heavy rain. The two Jerez full-length races will both hand out full championship points, one taking place on Saturday and the other on Sunday. Saturday’s Superpole session and Last Chance Race will determine the same starting grids for both of the full-length races.

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Greg Haines

By Greg Haines

Superbike reporter and Eurosport commentator