WorldSBK Most: Razgatlioglu returns to dominate in FP2

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Picture: GeeBee Images

Pata Yamaha’s Toprak Razgatlioglu led the way with a record-breaking 1’31.506 lap during WorldSBK FP2 at Most on Friday.

The new circuit record sat just over two-tenths ahead of BMW’s Scott Redding as day one for the Czech round concluded. Ducati’s Michael Rinaldi and Alvaro Bautista battling for best of the rest and coming home inches apart in third and fourth.

Afternoon practice rolled out with Redding in charge on the BMW thanks to a 1’32.412 on his third lap. Ducat’s Rinaldi joining the Englishman in the top two from KRT’s Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes before Bautista bettered his teammate for second.

The Italian continued to climb as he topped the session in the opening stages before Redding struck back, 0.021s ahead. Honda’s Iker Lecuona’s session came to an untimely end after the Spaniard suffered an intense highside after ten minutes on track.

Bautista took charge with half an hour to go as the current championship leader sat just 0.013s clear of his closest rivals. Toprak Razgatlioglu holding fourth in the session but yet to improve overall on his morning pace, likewise Rea, Garrett Gerloff and Andrea Locatelli in sixth to eighth as track limits played its part - with 44 infringements registered during FP1 alone, and all but one at turn one.

The Ducati tussle out front saw Rinaldi back in front at the halfway stage with a 1’32.138. Razgatlioglu repeatedly pushing the pace on the Pata Yamaha in the opening two sectors before losing out in the second half of the lap. Hafizh Syahrin crashing the MIE Honda on an out lap from 19th with 20 minutes to go.

Loris Baz circulated in eighth on the Bonovo BMW as the second half fired up. Teammate Eugene Laverty running 16th and a second adrift of the Frenchman, with Brits Peter Hickman and Ryan Vickers continuing their world stage education from 19th and 23rd respectively

The closing quarter of an hour saw thy space at the front intensify as the top seven all vied for outright contention. Redding the first to improve and hitting the top with a 1’32.081 as Lowes advanced to fifth, two-tenths shy of his countryman and 0.018s off his teammate in fourth.

Rinaldi and Baz took first and second in quick succession as the final team minutes began. The Ducati bettering Rea’s FP1 time to take the helm of the combined standings with Baz just two-tenths adrift on the upgraded M1000RR. Vickers unfortunate to crash the Pedercini Kawasaki out with eight minutes to go.

Razgatlioglu returned to dominate the times with five to go as the Turk set a 1’32.506 new lap record. Puccetti Kawasaki’s Lucas Mahias on the wheels of the Yamaha as he boosted his own 13th-worthy effort.

The hot laps kept coming as Redding bounced back to second, Rea and Gerloff the sole riders in the top ten yet to improve on their morning pace as the clock counted down. Bautista climbed to fourth as Locatelli set a personal best to split the KRT pairing, from seventh.

Razgatlioglu was unbeaten as the chequered flag dropped. Redding, Rinaldi, Bautista and Baz heading Rea, Locatelli, Lowes, Honda’s Xavi Vierge and Gerloff in the top ten with Laverty improving to 14th at the close of play.

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