Local rider Tati Mercado shares his first impressions after visiting the circuit
The MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship is now less than three months away from writing another chapter in its long and impressive history. After racing all across the globe throughout the past thirty years, WorldSBK and WorldSSP riders will have the chance to battle in South America for the first time. The MOTUL Argentinian Round – the penultimate challenge of the season – will take place at the all-new Circuito San Juan Villicum from October 12-14th, making Argentina the 26th country to host a WorldSBK event.
With the all-important date coming up, a delegation of representatives from FIM, local authorities and Dorna visited the site of the Argentinian Round last week to confirm first-hand that construction work, which started in October 2016, is going to plan. Amongst the group of visitors was WorldSBK rider and local hero Leandro ‘Tati’ Mercado (Orelac Racing Verdnatura).
The independent rider and former STK1000 champion was given the chance to go for a spin around the brand-new track, and his first impressions could not have been better: “The design is very technical. I think it’s very good and can provide a lot of entertainment. It’s a wide track with a lot of overtaking points and elevation changes. The main straight is impressive: part of it is downhill, then it straightens out but just before Turn 1 it slopes down again. Going through the main straight, at some points Turn 1 is a blind one. There’s also a series of successive turns that need to be linked together well, you need to get your tyre in well to set a good time. My impression of San Juan Circuit is that it’s a very different track to the rest of the calendar”.
The Argentinian circuit, with preparations for its debut on the calendar in full swing, is 4.266 kilometres long, with 19 turns (eleven left, eight right), and a back straight stretching out over more than a kilometre in length.
The MOTUL Argentinian Round takes places from October 12th to 14th – catch all the action from WorldSBK’s South American debut as well as every other date on the calendar thanks to the WorldSBK VideoPass.