LAST STOP PORTIMAO; NOW LET’S FLY TO AUSTRALIA!
Intense last week for the WorldSBK circus; after the two days in Jerez, the protagonists moved to Portimao, the splendid ups and downs of the Algarve, for an important practice session before flying to Australia, where the real 2023 debut will take place!
In Jerez, Philipp struggled to find the right feeling with the new Ducati Panigale V4-R; the riding position was the main problem to solve, in order to then concentrate the work on the set-up. Between the two tests, thanks to the work of the technicians, with the creation of special appendices on the tank, and to a lowered seat, the German rider immediately found good confidence. During the first day, Oettl was able to make a comparison between some components from last season and the new ones, so as to better adapt to the differences in behaviour. In the afternoon, then, he was able to make good use of the 2022 tyres supplied (some factory teams tested a new development of the softer compound), riding in 1.40.846 with the qualifying tyre. On the second day he immediately found an excellent feeling with the SC0, the harder compound, right from the morning. First, he stopped within four tenths of his personal best from the previous day, then he even managed to improve the time set on the qualifying tyre by a tenth. In the afternoon, which was slightly colder than yesterday the team tried to put on a couple of soft tyres, but perhaps the conditions weren’t optimal to try the time attack, thus maintaining the reference set in the late morning with “race” configuration. During day 2, the technicians had the opportunity to work on the rear shock absorber and on the electronics, trying to understand the feeling from the new swingarm and the bike in the 2023 configuration. Excellent data collected, so as to be able to analyse it, evaluate what can be improved, both in technical terms and speaking about riding style. The Go Eleven rider’s ideal time is really strong, faster than the time set, as he was unable to put together a proper fast lap.
Philipp still has to find something, he lacks a few tenths and a little confidence before he can be satisfied with the pre-season work; for this, the two pre-Australia days will be fundamental, where the official tests of WorldSBK 2023 will take place. A clear step forward, however, compared to Jerez, as we have seen, which gives Philipp a big boost in view of the (real) seasonal debut, when it will be essential to be fast and constant!
P 1 A. Bautista 1.39.035
P 2 J. Rea + 0.009
P 3 M. Rinaldi + 0.109
P 4 T. Razgatlioglu + 0.406
P 5 A. Locatelli + 0.670
P 13 P. Oettl + 1.754
Philipp Oettl (Rider):
“Another two interesting days of testing, I think these were much more productive compared to Jerez, especially cause we could compare both bikes, and I could adapt better to the new seat position. This was a really big step, now I feel comfortable on the new bike. Then we started working on the electronics and suspensions. I think we collected a lot of informations, from these two days, I think now it’s really important to put everything together for the Australian Round. There we will have two days of tests more, that’s quite a good luck for us, cause I still miss something and I don’t feel completely ready to race. In Portimao we found the right way to follow, and I am really optimistic for the first race! ”
Denis Sacchetti (Team Manager):
“Two very positive days here in Portimao, where we found the right ergonomics for the 2023 Ducati. Philipp found the correct feeling and was able to push, starting to work on the set-up and electronics. The objective of the test was done, but obviously it is only the starting point, we still have to find the optimal feeling he had last year in Australia. Now we will have to make the flight cases, time is very little and we still have a lot of work to do, we leave for Australia, the first round of the 2023 season. We are excited because the level of the riders and teams on track is as high as ever, but we know we have the potential to do well and get some satisfaction!”