The opening day of the 8th round of the World Superbike Championship saw Team Hero EBR rider Aaron Yates ride his EBR1190RX machine on Portimao’s rollercoaster, ending the two combined free practice sessions outside of the qualification maxima as once again the team were blighted with set-up issues.
Keen to put the disappointment of Misano behind him, Geoff’s weekend began in the worst possible way with him unable to ride his 1190RX machine as parts were delayed at Portuguese customs. He was however able to make his Portimao debut in FP2 but such is the challenging, undulating nature of the Portuguese circuit he was unable to make any serious impression in the overall standings. Aaron on the other hand completed a good number of laps throughout the day but despite making steps forward with 1190RX machine found himself just outside of the qualifying limit.
Looking ahead to tomorrow’s FP3 and given the slight progress made in FP2 for both riders, the team is optimistic of having both riders qualify for Sunday’s races.
Geoff May: “For me Portimao is the coolest track that I have ever ridden. It has a great layout and is so much fun to ride. I made the most of FP2 after missing the morning session but the engine arrived with ten minutes to go this afternoon and apart from one small glitch everything went well. There is a definite improvement so I am confident for tomorrow after setting myself the challenge this afternoon to learn the circuit quickly.”
Aaron Yates: “We made some improvements in FP2 with the bike set-up and that should help us tomorrow in FP3. I didn’t go as fast I thought we would this afternoon but we did make a step forward. I am more comfortable with the track now after the afternoon session and am ready for tomorrow.”