Rea sets the pace

Friday without surprises at the WorldSBK premiere in Navarra. Those who dominated the tests prior to the big event, also replicated it in the first free sessions of this training day. Jonathan Rea has been the fastest of all, making eagerness of his fame of leadership in those appointments that arrive for the first time to the championship. It marked the best time of the day, already in the morning, although with only a margin of one tenth in front of his rivals, which will not be enough if he wants to maintain his leadership at the end of this seventh round of the season.

It was Toprak Razgatlioglu and Scott Redding who came closest to the world champion in the morning. Of course, in a session where more was sought to know the track and find the appropriate settings to already face the rest of the weekend, so that equality was maintained at all times. Already in the afternoon, the Turkish Yamaha rider was the fastest, in a slower session, but where Kawasaki’s lagged behind, lagging in seventh place and unhappy with the pace obtained in hellish heat (in fact, he was seen shaking his head, in part, for riding new compounds at the end that did not help him to score a better lap).

It wasn’t any better for Scott Redding either, the day after announcing his Ducati departure to the BMW pit for 2022. The Briton had a technical problem in his Panigale V4 that hurt him in the afternoon session, so it did not improve times either. And, in addition, the fall of Garrett Gerloff was also remarkable on this first day in Navarra, although without consequences for the Yamaha rider.

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The Spanish did not have great luck in this new home race either. Navarra makes its debut on the WorldSBK calendar as the seventh different Spanish circuit that has been part of the competition since its birth (same number as the event that hosts this weekend). Álvaro Bautista, still awaiting his return to Ducati, finished eighth with his Honda. Tito Rabat was fourteenth and Isaac Viñales is low for this round for testing positive for coronavirus. The positive thing is that in the stands they returned with the little public that could be done this Friday to enjoy free practice.

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