Jerez WorldSBK test: Van der Mark finds extra tyre life with new shock - Bikesport News

Jerez WorldSBK test: Van der Mark finds extra tyre life with new shock

Picture: GeeBee Images

With a new team-mate for 2020 in the shape of Toprak Razgatlioglu, works Yamaha WorldSBK rider Michael van der Mark also has an uprated 2020 machine or at least he will have when he gets his own completely full new spec machine soon.

At the Jerez tests, he and all other Yamaha riders – except test pilot Nico Canepa – were on some form of hybrid 2019/2020 bike.

All the same, VDM was very happy with his latest test, and especially the new spec cost-capped Öhlins rear suspension units, which first showed up in Spain.

“Normally everybody says ‘Yeah, we had a good test’ but we really had a good test! Normally in testing you have both positives and negatives as you work your way through the program, but these two days were overwhelmingly positive,” said the Dutchman, speaking to bikesportnews.com.

“We did lot of laps and our main focus was to find rear grip and we had some ideas which were better. Then Öhlins came with a different rear shock and it was a big improvement. We are still improving that part but it is just the start of it, and it is so much easier to ride as well.

Even for a longer run we are saving more tyre. I am really happy with that. It is just the start but it feels really good. We have a different option front fork but we are mainly trying the same one.”

There were some other 2020 details unmentioned, but a redesigned fairing was a surprise happy find for VDM, especially as he is relatively tall.

“The fairing is different and especially for me as a tall rider, you feel better protected. We can see the top speed increased as well. It is not massive but it is better for me as I feel less wind. There is a bit more top speed, which is always helpful.”

VDM was a strong third place rider on the final day, despite his being the machine that sprang a dramatic oil leak that took a long time to clean up before the final hour of action got underway on the last day.

‘Magic Mikey’ will not be going on holiday quite yet, as he has promotional work to do, before he heads to Malaysia to take part in the inaugural Eight-Hours of Sepang race event with Franco Morbidelli and Hafizh Syahrin.

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