Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit
Following on from the two-day tests in Jerez and Portimao last month, the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team travelled down under, to conclude the final pre-season test ahead of the 2019 FIM World Superbikes Series opener in Australia.
With chassis set-up being the main focus of the test, both riders managed to progress through their 2-day testing plan, making changes to rider positions, chassis balance and getting the final base setting in place for Round 1.
Day one of testing saw Tom Sykes set a lap time of 1’31.300 putting him in fourth place, completing 57 laps. The 2013 WorldSBK champion on day 2 impressively went a whole -0.750 faster with a lap time of 1’30.539 closing the test in second overall.
Markus Reiterberger managed to end day 1 of the test in P9 with a fastest of lap of 1’31.992. He went on to improve his lap time set on day one by going -0.100 faster completing the test in ninth overall with a best of 1'31.824.
Shaun Muir – Team Principal
“We had left the European tests in a very good position and a lot of hard work was carried out to make further improvements in Phillip Island. At the end of the two days of testing here, we could clearly see the benefits of the small but very significant improvements to the chassis.
Tom went through all the things we had planned to test and had his best package, which he ran on Tuesday afternoon in its final configuration. That is a very good base setting for him now to start the season.
Markus has taken a big step forward after Portimão and he is in a very strong position where we feel he can definitely compete for the top 10, if not the top 8 in the races at the coming weekend.
Overall we must be realistic with our early season goals. It’s obviously great to see our team at the sharp end, but the true fight will be in the races on Saturday and Sunday. In that respect, the team have done all they can, to get us into this position in such a short period of time, and I am proud of all their hard work and commitment. We will now prepare the bikes over the next two days and then look forward to the race weekend”
Marc Bongers - BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director
“The results of the two days of testing in Phillip Island has been very positive and confirms the performance of the few test days that we had in winter.
We have all pulled together over the past few months, and we now can see the result of this good cooperation. That’s motivating!
But we have to be realistic and look ahead to the first race. That’s the first time for us to see where we really stand in the race trim. We also know that we still have a lot of work ahead of us, but the base of the new BMW S 1000 RR offers a lot of potential. We are happy to be back and we all really can’t wait to start the first race.”
Tom Sykes – (GBR)
“The BMW S 1000 RR is still really new in terms of track millage which makes all this more impressive. The whole of the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK team are working quite flawlessly and have dealt with all of the obstacles that have come our way so far.
I’m here to be competitive and I’m sure everyone in the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK team is feeling the same. There is no denying how fresh this project is but ultimately we want to be competitive and this test has shown glimpses that we can be.”
I won’t get ahead of myself, I know what I need so we will try our best come race weekend and see where we end up.’’
Markus Reiterberger (GER)
"The test overall has gone well, from the first session we had a good feeling on the bike and made some good progress in the settings.
The second session was a little more difficult as we went through our test plan, there were a few problems in the box which also cost us a little bit of time so we didn’t have enough time to put in a new tyre at the end of the session.
We tried out an alternative chassis and triple clamp configuration during the last session but we still need to find out more about it. It could be the solution for the future, but to decide during this weekend it is still an unknown.
Overall I am happy with the way the test went and I am looking forward to the start of the 2019 FIM WorldSBK Championship."