Superbikes - Imola WSBK test: Lowes tops Supersport timesheets

Yakhnich Yamaha’s Sam Lowes was the fastest bike out on track at the official World Supersport test at Imola today. The Lincolnshire rider was 0.7 seconds faster than the rest of the grid, and out paced his team-mate Russian rider, Vladimir Leonov, who was the second quickest racer.

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Superbikes - Imola WSBK test: Lowes tops Supersport timesheets
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Imola WSBK test: Lowes tops Supersport timesheets

Lowes, who’s still the current championship leader set his best time of 1’50.477 in the morning session, and even though the rider completed 24 laps of the circuit in the second session, he was unable to beat his time that he clocked a few hours before.

The English lad used his time out on track to evaluate with his Russian team a new spec-engine for his Yamaha YZF-R6, and even though he did not improve on his time from the opening session, he was still only seven hundredths of a second off his best lap record that he set during qualifying on Saturday. His team-mate also lapped his fastest time in the morning session.

Yesterdays race winner, MAHI Racing’s Kenan Sofuoglu was able to improve on his lap times in the afternoon session, with his best lap of 1’51.264, one second slower than Lowes and finished the day third fastest, followed by PTR Honda’s Sheridan Morais, who completed 56 laps, more than any other rider out on the circuit today.

Pata Honda team-mates Lorenzo Zanetti and Michael Van der Mark were setting similar lap times in both sessions, but the Dutch rider did crash this afternoon at Acque Minerali, with two minutes remaining. He was unhurt, but it ended his session out on track and was unable to beat the time of 1’52.253 set by Zanetti, and was one tenths of a second off the pace to end the day sixth fastest behind his Italian team-mate.

Rivamoto rider Jack Kennedy used these sessions to test out his brakes, after he experienced problems in yesterday’s race which prevented him from battling for a top ten finish. Today the Dubliner tried out new levers for his Honda CBR600RR, and he also tested to see if it would reduce his arm pump issues too. It was a productive day for the Irishman as he ended up eighth fastest overall with a 1’52.999 time, which he achieved in the afternoon session, and finished the day ahead of Martini Yamaha’s Massimo Roccoli and VFT Racing’s Fabio Menghi who rounded off the top ten.

ParkinGO MV rider Christian Iddon did not have the best of weekends after crashing out on oil in the Supersport race yesterday, but the Brit had a solid morning and that is where he clocked his fastest time of 1’53.614. He was one second slower in the final session, but ended the day thirteenth fastest. Fellow Brit, DMC-Lorenzini rider Kev Coghlan did not take part in the official tests today.

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