The Motorland circuit of Aragon (Spain) held today the free practices for the Pirelli Aragon Round, the first race weekend of the 2022 WorldSBK season.
Alvaro Bautista and Michael Rinaldi – with the Ducati Panigale V4 R of the Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team – finished the first day in second and fifth position respectively.
Following an intense work on setup and tyres, Bautista was able to pick up the pace in the afternoon FP2, running a sort of race simulation session. In the final time attack with the SCQ tyre, the spaniard set the fastest time of 1’49.606, (second quickest of the day).
From the very first laps of the morning, Rinaldi put behind him the difficulties encountered during testing earlier in the week. After recording a time of 1’50.000 in FP1 (which allowed him to close FP1 in third position and in fifth in the final combined standings), in FP2 the Italian rider worked well on his race pace but was unable to make the most of the SCQ tyre in the final time attack.
Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #19)
“It was a very positive Friday, especially after a difficult FP1. We tried a different setup to the one we had in testing but the feeling was not right. In the afternoon things went very well. We did a lot of intense work with the tyres to get more data and try to make the best choice for the Superpole and the races”.
Michael Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #21)
“I am satisfied with what we did today. The bike’s set-up has improved a lot compared to the tests at the beginning of the week and that has given me a very positive feeling. I think the race pace is strong, in line with the front guys. Certainly, however, we need to do something more with the qualifying tyre, which up until now I have not been able to exploit to the full”.
After a lackluster FP1 (12th place overall) Nicolò Bulega and the Aruba.it Racing WSSP team worked hard on the Ducati Panigale V2 and in the afternoon found the ideal feeling for a solid session. Bulega ended the first day of free practice for the Pirelli Aragon Round in second place with a time of 1’53.986.
Nicolò Bulega (Aruba.it Racing WSSP Team #11)
“I am quite happy with this first day of free practice. Especially in the afternoon, we found again the good sensations of the test. We didn’t do too badly even though, obviously, there is room for improvement. We are all close to each other except for Aegerter who made a bit of a difference today. But if we can fix some details we can definitely do well”.