Photography By: Gold & Goose
FIXI Crescent Suzuki’s Leon Camier topped the World Superbike test at Phillip Island less than a week before the start of the 2013 season.
Using an engine developed with Yoshimura, the Brit recorded an “unofficial” lap time of 1:31.2 secs., which was half a second under the current race record of 1:31.785 set by Aprilia’s Max Biaggi in the first race of the 2012 weekend.
Camier’s lap came on a race tire in the morning, and he followed it up with a race simulation, the only rider to complete a full race test. Camier was on a potentially faster lap when he suffered a high speed crash in the very fast final corner on his last lap of the day. The Suzuki rider tucked the front at over 120 mph, then watched as the GSX-R1000 flew through the gravel trap and over the tire wall, landing in a stand of trees. Camier was unhurt, though the bike was a write-off.
Camier and the rest of the WSB regulars will be back in action at Phillip Island on Monday for the final two-day pre-season test before the curtain goes up on the 2013 season starting next Friday, Feb. 22.
“The day started off really well and we got down to some good times,” Camier said in a team press release. “The bike felt really comfortable, we improved it a little bit chassis wise and the electronics are slowly getting better. We also did a race run, I was not really pushing it, but just trying to be comfortable and the keep the lap-times consistent. We can still improve the race pace and I think I can do a bit of that through my riding. At the end of the day we had a massive crash when I was pushing for a really fast lap – I just got caught out by the wind. The bike was absolutely totaled, so the boys have got a lot of work to do tonight. Hopefully we’ll be back up to speed as soon as we get back on track on Monday.”
Aprilia’s Sylvain Guintoli finished “unofficially” a tenth slower than Camier with Honda’s Johnny Rea another tenth back in third. BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK Team’s Marco Melandri was fourth fastest with Michel Fabrizio fifth on an Aprilia.