Rea’s tyre choice for Saturday not decided, believes "we can use both" SC0 solutions

Friday, 7 October 2022 16:17 GMT

The six-time Champion took second place in Friday’s Free Practice 2 sessions as he looks to end his win drought at a circuit he has been so successful at

The MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship descended on the rollercoaster that is the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve for the 2022 Pirelli Portuguese Round, with Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) taking second spot after Friday’s Friday Practice 2 session. Portimao is a circuit he has been so successful at in the past and, with a win drought that extends to the end of May, Rea is hoping he can kickstart a new streak and started off with strong pace on Friday with second in FP2.

Rea’s day started out with four in Free Practice 1 as he posted a 1’41.356s, almost four tenths down on the pace set by Michael Ruben Rinaldi ( Racing – Ducati) who topped the times. Rea completed 16 laps during FP1, with a longest stint of six laps, on his way to fourth spot as he finished more than a tenth clear of Championship rival Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati), while he was a tenth down on reigning Champion Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) who finished third.

In Free Practice 2, Rea’s best time was a 1’41.196s, almost half-a-second down on Razgatlioglu ahead of him, as he completed 20 timed laps as he completed a 10-lap stint during the session with his time all in the 1’41s bracket; ranging from a 1’41.289s to a 1’41.778s. Despite his impressive pace in this stint, his best time came on his final timed lap as he posted a 1’41.196s to take second spot in the second 45-minute session.

Discussing his day, Rea said: “It was a positive day. We ran through the tyre options to try them all and also understanding the track. I always love riding here. It’s quite challenging as a rider. You have to make a lot of special inputs with the bike, you’re almost massaging it around the circuit because it’s so undulating. Enjoying that challenge and working with the team to find an optimum setup for tomorrow. Tried to do longer runs on tyres to understand where the tyre drop would be and how we can manage that. We achieved the targets for today and look forward now to the Superpole tomorrow to try and qualify on that front row.”

Tyre supplier Pirelli have brought three rear tyres to Portimao with the SC0 standard tyre and the SC0 development B0624 solutions available as soft compound tyres, while the SCX is available to use in the Tissot Superpole and Tissot Superpole Race. There are also three tyres available for the front tyre, all from the SC1 range: the standard SC1 soft compound, the B0570 development solution and the A0674 solution.

Discussing his potential tyre choices for Saturday, Rea said: “There’s two options I feel like we can use, both SC0s as the race tyre. I was quite consistent and fast with both, although I didn’t really put a strong lap time, a time attack, together but consistency wasn’t too bad. We’ll just check that to understand the data to understand both FP1 and FP2 where it can be 8-10 degrees difference on track, so it’s hard to compare. We need to see what temperatures we will have tomorrow, understand how the bike behaves on each tyre and make a good choice from there.”

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