GEICO US Round commences with Davies at the top of FP1 timesheet, followed by Laverty and Melandri
As Round 8 of the 2017 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship got underway on Friday at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati) returned from injury to lead the way in FP1, topping the timesheet ahead of Eugene Laverty (Milwaukee Aprilia) and Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati).
Welshman Davies missed Race 2 at the last round at Misano due to back and thumb injuries sustained in a crash late in the Saturday race that same weekend, but after a fitness test ahead of the action at Laguna he got right on the pace again. His 1’23.425 lap was the fastest in FP1 and put him a significant +0.673s margin ahead of second quickest rider Laverty, with Melandri in third place.
Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) was fourth best, with Leon Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) completing the top five in the Californian sunshine.
Also featuring in the top ten were Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team), Jordi Torres (Althea BMW Racing Team), Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team), Stefan Bradl (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team) and Xavi Fores (BARNI Racing Team).
The riders will return to the track for their second practice session of the GEICO US Round at 2.30pm local time on Friday.