Rea Completes Test Ahead Of WorldSBK Round One.
The Phillip Island circuit in Australia hosted the final pre-season test for the WorldSBK riders on Monday 24 and Tuesday 25 February, with Jonathan Rea wrapping up his pre-race checks and set-up tasks in readiness for the first round of the year this coming weekend.
Rea took his official Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR to the top place overall on the time sheets with a lap time of 1m 30.488s.
Light rain and several red flags prevented a full first day of action but on the second day the early morning and then afternoon sessions allowed the KRT staff to evaluate tyre options and set-up decisions looking to the imminent arrival of race weekend.
Rea worked on both tyre life and finding an optimum bike balance to take on the unique 4.455km Phillip Island circuit, which is always a tough test for tyre durability at race pace.
Now the times champion Rea will face three races at PI - two full distance events (one on Saturday and one on Sunday) and a ten lap sprint race on Sunday morning, 1 March.
The opening round of the 2020 championship is the first of 13 rounds, with the second one coming along at the Losail International Circuit in Qatar, between 13 and 15 March.
Jonathan Rea, stated: “It has been a positive test all-in-all. Even though some sessions were hindered a bit by the weather, we have been able to confirm a lot of items from the balance side, to try to get the bike to turn more naturally. That was out focus coming here, knowing what we knew from last year. I felt good with the bike and tested two different front tyres. Both gave good but different sensations so it is more about understanding which one we go towards the weekend with. You never really know in this race. We have done race distance on all the tyres we used and I feel fast and consistent with all. But you never really know until the race. It is clear at this track that you can go all out and be really fast but you tend to run into issues at the end of the race. So it is more about trying to make your consistent rhythm easy and I feel like we have a bike that is quite user-friendly. That is positive to go into Friday with.”