Although he didn’t improve his lap time in FP2, Perez Gonzalez was fastest in both sessions to start the season finale in the perfect fashion
Free Practice 2 for the FIM Supersport World Championship was delayed and disrupted throughout the 30-minute session as a red flag temporarily brought proceedings to a halt after 12 minutes at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve as Jose Luis Perez Gonzalez (Accolade Smrz Racing) topped both FP1 and FP2 for the Pirelli Portuguese Round, while Championship leader Alvaro Diaz (Arco Motor University Team) took second place in FP2.
GONZALEZ THE RIDER TO BEAT: can he end the season on a high?
Perez Gonzalez posted a 1’55.197s in FP1 which was his fastest time of the day, with the Spanish rider unable to improve his lap time between sessions as he claimed a Friday double in Friday’s two Free Practice sessions. He finished ahead of Victor Steeman (MTM Kawasaki) in the combined classification, 0.154s behind Perez Gonzalez, as he, like his rival, did not improve his time in FP2. Italian rider Mirko Gennai (Team BrCorse) took third place in the combined classification after setting an FP1 time of 1’55.697s.
FINDING TIME: Championship leader Diaz surges up the order
Championship leader Alvaro Diaz (Arco Motor University Team) took fourth place in the end of day standings but was the highest-placed rider who improved his time between sessions. In FP1, Diaz posted a 1’56.268s but improved that to a 1’55.729s in FP2 to take fourth overall, and second in FP2. Inigo Iglesias (SMW Racing) was fifth at the end of Friday’s running but had a crash at Turn 13 during FP1 which limited his running, with Iglesias finishing ahead of Italian rider Bruno Ieraci (Prodina Racing WorldSSP300) in sixth place.
ROUNDING OUT THE TOP TEN: in contention at Portimao
Spanish rider Alex Millan (SMW Racing) ensured it was a strong day for the SMW Racing squad as he took seventh in the combined classification, finishing 0.033s ahead of Kevin Sabatucci (Kawasaki GP Project) in eighth place, while Dirk Geiger (Fusport-RT Motorsports by SKM-Kawasaki) was ninth at the end of Friday’s running. Ruben Bijman (MTM Kawasaki) rounded out the top ten as he aims to round out the season in strong fashion.
HOUSEKEEPING: to note from Friday in Portugal
The FP2 session was red flagged after Yuta Okaya (MTM Kawasaki) crashed on the exit of Turn 4 with around 12 minutes gone in the 30-minute session, with the Japanese rider taken to the medical centre for a check-up following the crash. With around 10 minutes left in the session, Marco Gaggi (Vinales Racing Team) and Harry Khouri (Team#109 Kawasaki) had an incident at Turn 12, while Fenton Seabright (Vinales Racing Team) crashed at Turn 3 in the opening stages of the session.
The top six following the end of WorldSSP300 action, full results here:
1. Jose Luis Perez Gonzales (Accolade Smrz Racing) 1’55.197s
2. Victor Steeman (MTM Kawasaki) +0.154s
3. Mirko Gennai (Team BrCorse) +0.500s
4. Alvaro Diaz (Arco Motor University Team) +0.532s
5. Inigo Iglesias (SMW Racing) +0.581s
6. Bruno Ieraci (Prodina Racing WorldSSP300) +0.727s
Watch more WorldSSP300 action from Portimao using the WorldSBK VideoPass!