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Catalunya WorldSBK, Friday Practice | Ducati usurps BMW as Bulega leads Bautista on Friday

Gold & Goose

Aruba.it Ducati bounced back to end the opening day of practice for Round 2 of the 2024 WorldSBK Championship at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya holding down a Friday 1-2 with Nicolo Bulega leading Alvaro Bautista.

The factory outfit - which dominated across the entire Catalunya WorldSBK weekend in 2023 with Bautista - looked on the back foot in FP1 as ROKiT BMW Motorrad turned heads by occupying the top two spots with Toprak Razgatlioglu and Michael van der Mark.

However, while not all riders in the 23-strong field would go quicker during the hotter afternoon session, Bulega and Bautista would make comfortably the biggest gains between the sessions to lift themselves past the M 1000 RR duo come the end of play.


A race winner on his debut in Australia last month, Bulega sparkled again as the only rider to dip below 1m 41secs, his 1m 40.907secs lap - which came in the closing stages of FP2 - proving good enough to hold Bautista at bay by two tenths of a second.

Despite lapping slower than their morning bests, Razgatlioglu and van der Mark’s FP1 times were good enough to hold down third and fourth respectively, while Pata PROMETEON Yamaha continued the pattern by holding fifth and sixth on the end of day timesheets, Jonathan Rea ahead of Andrea Locatelli.

A strong day for Ducati all-round, satellite standouts Andrea Iannone, Danilo Petrucci and Sam Lowes complemented their factory counterparts by joining Bulega and Bautista inside the top ten in seventh, eighth and ninth, as Remy Gardner reeled off the top ten.

Elsewhere, there were mixed fortunes for the British contingent, not least early WorldSBK points’ leader Alex Lowes, the KawasakI Racing Team rider left with some work to do overnight after ending his Friday down in 14th overall.

Behind him, fellow Brits Scott Redding ended his day down in 17th, with Brad Ray in 21st and Tarran Mackenzie in 22nd.

🇪🇸 ⏱️ 2024 Catalunya WorldSBK | Friday Free Practice Results [Combined]

Friday | Conditions - Dry, Sunny
🇪🇸 ⏱️ 2024 WorldSBK Results | Circut de Barcelona-Catalunya | Free Practice 2 Results [Combined] | Round 2 of 12
PosRiderNatTeamMotorcycleLap Time
1Nicolo Bulega🇮🇹Aruba RacingDucati Panigale V4 R1m 40.907
2Alvaro Bautista🇪🇦Aruba RacingDucati Panigale V4 R1m 41.154
3Toprak Razgatlioglu🇹🇷ROKiT BMW MotorradBMW M 1000 RR1m 41.199
4Michael van der Mark🇳🇱ROKiT BMW MotorradBMW M 1000 RR1m 41.245
5Jonathan Rea🇬🇧Pata PROMOTEONYamaha R11m 41.400
6Andrea Locatelli🇮🇹Pata PROMOTEONYamaha R11m 41.473
7Andrea Iannone🇮🇹Team Go ElevenDucati Panigale V4 R1m 41.497
8Danilo Petrucci🇮🇹Barni Spark RacingDucati Panigale V4 R1m 41.508
9Sam Lowes🇬🇧Elf Marc VDS RacingDucati Panigale V4 R1m 41.701
10Remy Gardner🇦🇺GYTR GRTYamaha R11m 41.784
11Garrett Gerloff🇺🇲Bonovo Action RacingBMW M 1000 RR1m 41.845
12Dominique Aegerter🇨🇭GYTR GRTYamaha R11m 41.990
13Axel Bassani🇮🇹Kawasaki Racing TeamKawasaki ZX-10RR1m 42.025
14Alex Lowes🇬🇧Kawasaki Racing TeamKawasaki ZX-10RR1m 42.049
15Michael Ruben Rinaldi🇮🇹Motocorsa RacingDucati Panigale V4 R1m 42.056
16Xavi Vierge🇪🇦Team HRCHonda CBR1000RR-R1m 42.266
17Philipp Oettl🇩🇪GMT 94Yamaha R11m 42.397
18Scott Redding🇬🇧Bonovo Action RacingBMW M 1000 RR1m 42.404
19Iker Lecuona🇪🇦Team HRCHonda CBR1000RR-R1m 42.539
20Tito Rabat🇪🇦Puccetti RacingKawasaki ZX-10RR1m 42.647
21Bradley Ray🇬🇧MotoxracingYamaha R11m 43.161
22Tarran Mackenzie🇬🇧Petronas MIE RacingHonda CBR1000RR-R1m 43.180
23Adam Norrodin🇲🇾Petronas MIE RacingHonda CBR1000RR-R1m 44.280

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