2011 World Superbike Phillip Island Test Day 1

February 21, 2011
Matt Davidson
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Carlos Checa secured the fastest lap on Day 1 ahead of Sylvain Guintoli and Jakub Smrz.
Carlos Checa secured the fastest lap on Day 1 of testing ahead of Sylvain Guintoli and Jakub Smrz.

Althea Ducati’s Carlos Checa proved he’s in fighting shape for the opening round of the 2011 World Superbike Championship after setting the fastest pace during Day 1 of final pre-season testing in Australia. The Spaniard posted a lap of 1’31.383 during the second session of the day at Phillip Island to beat out Team Liberty Racing Ducati’s Sylvain Guintoli by nearly a full second. Overall, it was an excellent start to the test for Ducati as the Italian marque witnessed the top-three sports occupied by its machinery.

“We know the Ducati works well here and this track I really like,” said Checa. “We never tested with this bike here in the winter but from the beginning I felt comfortable. We started with the settings of last year’s race and that was quite good. We changed some small things and understood some direction to take with set-up. Then it was just working with the tires and I used three different ones. Now we need to check which one will be the best for the races. So we will try a long run tomorrow. But no matter the tires, we could do good lap times.”

Rounding out the top-three times on the first day of testing was Guintoli’s Czech teammate, Jakub Smrz, who ended just 0.013 seconds adrift of Guintoli. Defending champion Max Biaggi of Aprilia Alitalia also posted a decent time considering he was absent from the first morning session. Alstare Suzuki’s Michel Fabrizio was 1.070 seconds off the pace of the leader after posting a lap of 1’32.453 aboard

Jakub Smrz proved to be the fastest rider in official pre-season testing at Portimao.
Czech rider Jakub Smrz was 0.013 seconds adrift of his teammate, Sylvain Guintoli.

his Suzuki GSX-R1000. Meanwhile, Kawasaki’s Tom Sykes secured the sixth-fastest time of the day with World Superbike newcomer, Marco Melandri, earning seventh in the charts after posting a time that was 1.091 adrift of Checa.
Castrol Honda’s Jonathan Rea ran mid-pack on the first day after logging the eighth-quickest time of 1’32.532. BMW Motorrad Motorsport’s Leon Haslam remained just 0.046 seconds behind Rea as Yamaha’s Eugene Laverty rounded out the top-10 times with a lap of 1’32.600. Several top names remained outside the top-10 during Day 1, including BMW’s Troy Corser, Aprilia Alitalia’s Leon Camier, Pata Racing’s Noriyuki Haga and BMW Motorrad Italia’s James Toseland.
The paddock will conduct one more day of testing at Phillip Island before the first race of the 2011 season on February 27th.
2011 World Superbike Phillip Island Test Day 1 Results:
1. Carlos Checa (Ducati) 1’31.383
2. Sylvain Guintoli (Ducati) 1’32.303
3. Jakub Smrz (Ducati) 1’32.316
4. Max Biaggi (Aprilia) 1’32.383
5. Michel Fabrizio (Suzuki) 1’32.453

Marco Melandri had surgery in order to clean up an old injury and to prevent further aggravation during his debut season in World Superbike.
Yamaha’s Marco Melandri was more than a second off Checa’s time at Phillip Island.

6. Tom Sykes (Kawasaki) 1’32.466
7. Marco Melandri (Yamaha) 1’32.474
8. Jonathan Rea (Honda) 1’32.532
9. Leon Haslam (BMW) 1’32.578
10. Eugene Laverty (Yamaha) 1’32.600
11. Joan Lascorz (Kawasaki) 1’32.940
12. Josh Waters (Suzuki) 1’33.140
13. Ruben Xaus (Honda) 1’33.165
14. Troy Corser (BMW) 1’33.255
15. Leon Camier (Aprilia) 1’33.560
16. Noriyuki Haga (Aprilia) 1’33.786
17. James Toseland (BMW) 1’33.829
18. Maxime Berger (Ducati) 1’33.909
19. Bryan Staring (Kawasaki) 1’34.047
20. Ayrton Badovini (BMW) 1’34.686
21. Roberto Rolfo (Kawasaki) 1’34.821
22. Mark Aitchison (Kawasaki) 1’35.306
23. Akira Yanagawa (Kawasaki) 1’35.470