Aruba.it Ducati’s Michael Rinaldi continued to dominate the WorldSBK times in Indonesia by heading Alvaro Bautista in Friday’s FP2.
The Italian’s final 1’32.468 effort held off his teammate by three hundredths of a second as the opening day at Mandalika drew to a close, Pata Yamaha’s Toprak Razgatlioglu completing the leading trio 0.157s adrift.
The afternoon action immediately got up to speed as the track registered 53℃ temperatures. Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea setting the initial 1’33.370 benchmark pace, almost a second clear of Bologna teammates Bautista and Rinaldi with Motocorsa’s Axel Bassani holding fourth on a lap worthy of P1 in FP1.
Bautista was the first to fall as FP2 bedded in. The reigning champion losing the Panigale at turn one on his fourth attempt as Bassani refined his time. GRT Yamaha’s Dominique Aegerter splitting the Ducatis until the number 47 improved yet again, with Rinaldi ahead of his fallen teammate next time around.
Alex Lowes claimed sixth on the second KRT as Pata Yamaha’s Andrea Locatelli advanced to fourth. Razgatlioglu, Garrett Gerloff and Tom Sykes yet to set times in the opening ten minutes with the 2021 champion up to seventh as he joined the action.
The factory Yamaha pairing continued to refine their times as Razgatlioglu captured third. Rinaldi back in charge overall with a 1’33.180 and half an hour on the clock, his teammate returning to the track at the midpoint of the session and instantly bettering by 0.05s.
Rookie Remy Gardner continued to impress on his GRT with a 1’33.3 for fourth. Sykes joining the pack with 20 minutes to go after sitting out the first half of FP2 suffering a bout of food poisoning.
Ninth-placed Michael van der Mark circulated as fastest BMW rider once again in the afternoon outing. Rokit teammate Scott Redding running two places adrift with Bonovo Action’s Garrett Gerloff and Loris Baz 12th and 14th respectively with a quarter of an hour left to play.
Lowes advanced to sixth with his 14th lap of FP2, Locatelli, Aegerter, Bassani and Honda’s improving Xavi Vierge rounding out the top ten as the session wound down with the BMW’s now condensed, just adrift.
Baz improved to tenth as the Bonovo rider picked up pace, Redding following suit to eighth moments later with van der Mark bettering the pair to seventh thanks to a 1’33.6, with five minutes to go. An openly frustrated Lecuona returned to the box from 15th in the standings following a second incident of the day, this time at turn ten.
A late surge found Bautista then Razgatlioglu at the head of the times with the first 1’32 offerings of the weekend. The Ducati rider instantly hitting back with a 1’32.499 as van der Mark took fifth. Rinaldi arriving 0.029s faster than his teammate to outpace the pack as the chequered flag dropped.
The Italian maintained his advantage in the final stages, Bautista, Razgatlioglu and Rea completing the top four ahead of the improving Dutchman with Gardner, Lowes, Locatelli, Bassani and Redding rounding out the top ten.