Infront testing – Aragón

Category: World Superbike (WSBK)

2nd July 2012

Alcañiz, 2nd July 2012. The day after its victorious appearance at Motorland Aragón, Team BMW Motorrad Motorsport went on track again at the Spanish venue. Today it took part at the official Infront testing with factory riders Marco Melandri (ITA) and Leon Haslam (GBR). The conditions were good, with sunny skies, air temperatures around 25 degrees Celsius and track temperatures up to 50 degrees Celsius.


The FIM Superbike World Championship teams and riders had two sessions of 2 hours 20 minutes each, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Marco and Leon got a first taste of the new 17-inch-tyres which supplier Pirelli is developing for next season. For 2013, the wheel size in the World Championship will change from the current 16.5 to 17 inches. Team BMW Motorrad Motorsport also used the track time to work on the set-up of the BMW S 1000 RRs, starting with yesterday’s settings as a base. In total, the two factory riders did 135 laps or 721.44 kilometres of testing today. Next stop for both of them is Garmisch-Partenkirchen (GER), where Marco and Leon will attend the BMW Motorrad Days next weekend (6th to 8th July).



Marco Melandri:
Best overall lap time: 1:57.313 min
In the morning, Marco did his laps with the current 16.5-wheels. He and his crew tested several tyre compounds and tried different suspension settings. In the afternoon, the Italian evaluated the new 17-inch tyres. In order to make comparisons, he first completed a few laps with a 16.5-inch size tyre and then switched to the 17-inch version of the same compound.



“It was interesting to ride the new 17-inch tyres. It was a completely different feeling from the usual Pirelli tyres we race now. The bike characteristics look more precise. For sure we still have a lot of work to do with the tyre but also with the bike to find a good set-up for this kind of tyre. I hope this is just the starting point and that I will be able to test the new solution before the end of the year just to understand which direction we need to take for next season.


This morning we tried some different suspension options, especially for the qualifying tyre, just to see if the feeling was better than on the race weekend. I think we have learned something. Overall it was a positive day and I am happy and actually I cannot wait to go to Brno.”



Leon Haslam:

Best overall lap time: 1:58.150 min

Leon’s work schedule was the opposite way round to that of his team mate. In the morning he did a few laps on a 16.5-inch tyre and then switched to the same specification in 17-inch size for comparison. In the afternoon, Leon and his crew tested different set-up options for the chassis and several 16.5-inch tyre compounds for the current season.



“I am really positive about the new tyre. Everyone was a little unsure, it is more a step in the production type direction, but for me it was an improvement. We improved the lap time and the grip and the stability were better – front and rear. Also on braking it was more stable, another positive was the corner exit. We had some issues at the corner entry, I ran a bit wide with the 17-inch but that’s because we need a slightly different set-up for this tyre. For this test we kept everything the same, but I think once we can concentrate on setting the bike up for the 17-inch tyre for me it will definitely be the better and faster one.


This afternoon we worked on the set-up. We had two different strategies on two different bikes, so we could compare back to back with a lot of things. We tested a lot like that and in the end, with the race tyre in similar conditions as yesterday, I was one second a lap faster than in the race so I was quite happy at the end. I just wish I had that yesterday. It was definitely a positive day.”



Andrea Dosoli (Head of Race Operations):

“It was quite an interesting day because we had the chance ride the 17-inch tyres for the first time. Both riders felt positive about them. For sure there still is a lot of work to do to get the best from this tyre but the first impression was very positive. The first trial of the new tyre is done and now we have to keep concentrating on the current season and the next races. A tough challenge lies ahead of us and we want to keep the momentum and try to win more races. Also it was an important test for us because both riders had the opportunity to spend half of the day on the standard 16.5-inch tyre. We used those couple of hours to work settings that could be helpful for the next race in Brno.”


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