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PICS | Which MotoGP riders beat Valentino Rossi to Superbike ‘pole’ in Portimao testing?

Yamaha Racing
Valentino Rossi, VR46 Yamaha R1

If you have been following the latest WorldSBK pre-season test at Portimao, then you might have noticed that the likes of Toprak Razgatlioglu, Jonathan Rea and Sam Lowes don’t have the Portuguese venue to themselves at the moment.

Indeed, a host of familiar names from the world of MotoGP have also made the trip to the Algarve to turn in some laps on their track day specification (but otherwise stock) sportsbikes alongside the WorldSBK and WorldSSP regulars.


Chief among them is Valentino Rossi, who in the spirit of team bonding, has joined members of his VR46 Academy - including MotoGP World Champion Pecco Bagnaia, Marco Bezzecchi and Fabio di Giannantonio - in tackling the undulating venue for a bit of match fitness training ahead of MotoGP pre-season testing in a couple of weeks.

Among them the 11 on track there were eight Ducatis, two Yamahas - one of Rossi - and one Honda for new Repsol HRC recruit Luca Marini

Naturally, there is very little to be taken away from these laps since the track time - which is being hosted by Ducati and is open to anyone - is primarily to shake off cobwebs and have a bit of fun at the same time.

That said, of the 11 GP regulars that were there, nine of them did have transponders on their machines, so… who went quickest of all?

⏱️ 2024 MotoGP Riders on Superbikes Results | Portimao, Portugal | Day 1 [Jan 2024] 🇵🇹
PosRiderNatMotorcycleLap TimeLaps
1Pecco Bagnaia🇮🇹Ducati Panigale V4 R1m 43.09072
2Luca Marini🇮🇹Honda CBR1000RR-R1m 43.35142
3Franco Morbidelli🇮🇹Ducati Panigale V4 R1m 43.42983
4Marco Bezzecchi🇮🇹Ducati Panigale V4 R1m 43.62281
5Enea Bastianini🇮🇹Ducati Panigale V4 R1m 43.66443
6Celestino Vietti🇮🇹Yamaha R11m 43.71379
7Fabio di Giannantonio🇮🇹Ducati Panigale V4 R1m 43.74036
8Valentino Rossi🇮🇹Yamaha R11m 44.70349
9Andre Migno🇮🇹Ducati Panigale V4 R1m 45.02652

For a gauge of where the likes of Bagnaia et al. are on their stock-spec sportbikes compared with the proper full-fat WorldSBK machines, Nicolo Bulega paced day one on his Aruba.it Racing Ducati Panigale V4 R with a 1m 39.913s.


incidentally, there were more familiar faces on track than showing on the timesheets with Marc Marquez and Alex Marquez also being invited to Portugal to put their company motorcycles through their paces.

A chance for Marquez to rag his new Ducati Panigale V4 R - which replaces the Honda CBR1000RR-R in his daily garage - the six-time MotoGP World Champion, who rides for Gresini Racing in MotoGP this year, didn't lap with a transponder fitted, sadly.

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