The expected poor weather at Jerez for the World Superbike test arrived for a time at the start of the final day and conditions proved changeable for the most part, with only a few riders able to get anywhere near a normal lap time when the sun occasionally shone.
That left Ducati World Superbike’s Davide Giugliano as the fasteset of the fast, thanks to his brilliant 1:40.166 lap, which he set on a dry track Tuesday.
“The chassis of the bike is very good and at this moment I have no problems at a track like this,” said Giugliano. “We’ve carried out many electronic and suspension tests that have allowed me to achieve solid results on a track that wasn’t in the best condition as far as grip was concerned. Now we have to see how things are at Aragon. But my bike is very good in the corners and this is the strong point. My race pace was also good here and we can keep our lap times. I used the new front tire from Pirelli and I like it but I would like to have more time on it. For my style the front tire is fundamental.”
Next best overall was Kawasaki’s Loris Baz with a 1:40.283 and his reigning World Champion teammate Tom Sykes was just behind, on a transponder-less 1:40.3, with both riders setting their best times on day two.
Some of the riders were reticent to ride in anything but fully wet or fully dry conditions on the final day, which meant that Baz did the first two dry days only, calling a halt before the really heavy rains arrived with an hour and a half to go.
Some riders took advantage of the wet periods on track to try specific set-up strategies. Voltcom Crescent Suzuki’s Eugene Laverty crashed today in the largely dry conditons mid-afternoon, but he recovered to complete testing on his new underslung rear swingarm.
Sykes was lapping hard and consistently towards the end of the test - when the wettest conditions of the three days showed up - using all the available track time to the full.
Championship leader Sylvain Guintoli in particular was lapping strongly on a soaked track, and the Aprilia factory rider was fastest rider on day three in the least damp conditions, although well off the best day two times with a 1:42.118.
Guintoli and all his peers now head to Aragon for the second round of the championship on April 13.
Combined Test Times
1. Davide Giugliano (Ducati) 1:40.166
2. Loris Baz (Kawasaki) 1:40.283
3. Tom Sykes (Kawasaki) 1:40.3 (no transponder)
4. Jonathan Rea (Honda) 1:40.731
5. Chaz Davies (Ducati) 1:40.745
6. Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia) 1:41.192
7. Marco Melandri (Aprilia) 1:41.201
8. Eugene Laverty (Suzuki) 1:41.377
9 Max Neukirchner (Ducati) 1:41.449
10. Leon Haslam (Honda) 1:41.453
11. Alex Lowes (Suzuki) 1:41.821
12. Xavier Fores (Ducati) 1:42.083
13. David Salom (Kawasaki) 1:43.642
14. Michele Magnoni (Honda) 1:45.858