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WorldSBK Phillip Island: Lowes recovers ground in Friday practice

Kawasaki’s Alex Lowes was back in the top ten as WorldSBK free practice fired up at Phillip Island on Friday.

Having run under the radar during pre-season testing, the British rider returned to the top eight in the combined times on Friday. His 1’31.459 morning pace sat just over a tenth shy of teammate Jonathan Rea and four tenths from Yamaha’s Andrea Locatelli in second, after two 45-minutes sessions at the 4.4km Australian circuit. Alvaro Bautista demonstrating his and Ducati’s dominance half a second clear of the rest of the pack.

“In the recent tests I was in a relatively low position on the timesheets but I knew we were a little bit better than that,” Lowes affirmed from Australia. “I would have said my real position was more like sixth, seventh, eighth, and that is where we were today.


“As a general rule on our bike, we struggle in hotter conditions. It just tipped around the 50°C mark on the track and we were in trouble, really struggling for edge grip on the rear.

“But I did a race simulation, I think maybe putting in one more lap than a full race simulation, and that is going to give us good information for tomorrow. The track is probably going to be slightly cooler, so it should feel better. We are not quite feeling as good as we want to right now, but tomorrow is race time, so I am sure I will fire up.”

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