Courtesy of Honda Racing Corporation
Just over a week since round 5 at Motorland Aragón, Team HRC now prepares for the sixth Superbike World Championship round, scheduled to take place this coming weekend at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in Montmeló, Spain.
Although a permanent fixture on the MotoGP calendar, the Barcelona facility will be hosting the World Superbikes for the very first time this season, with many of the field having little to no experience of racing at this particular track.
Team HRC rider Alvaro Bautista knows the circuit well from his MotoGP days, while Leon Haslam has raced at the track in the past but not for many years. The team completed a two-day test at the circuit just after the lockdown period, along with many of the other WorldSBK teams, but considering the limited track data available to them, Friday’s practice sessions will be more important than ever when it comes to bike set-up preparation.
Both Bautista, who scored the team’s first podium finish aboard the CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP at Aragón and was a strong podium contender throughout the Teruel round’s three races, and team-mate Haslam, who gained his best result of the season so far (fourth) during the last race, are looking forward to continuing the positive trend at Barcelona.
The first free practice session will get underway on Friday at 10.30am local time, while the two Superbike races and the Tissot Superpole race will play out over the weekend, with Sunday’s Race 2 taking place an hour later than is customary, at 3.00pm local time.