Rea edges out Redding as WorldSBK tackles Barcelona for first time

The majority of the WorldSBK field returns to track for a two-day test in Spain with Jonathan Rea edging out Scott Redding for top honours

Jonathan Rea - Kawasaki Racing Team

Jonathan Rea set the pace after two days of testing at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya as the majority of the field returned to action ahead of the 2020 WorldSBK restart in August.

In all 17 riders took to the track, which makes its debut on the WorldSBK calendar this year, with defending champion Rea picking up where he left off with a top time of 1m 40.450secs.

That was enough to squeeze out Scott Redding, who pumped in the second quickest time for Ducati just 0.150secs adrift of the Kawasaki rider even if technical issues curtailed his running on Thursday afternoon.

The duo were a comfortable margin ahead of third place man Tom Sykes as both BMWs showed promising pace, with Eugene Laverty following up in sixth place behind provisional championship leader Alex Lowes and top Yamaha rider Toprak Razgatlioglu.

Michael van der Mark followed up in seventh on the second of the Pata Yamahas, just edging out Loris Baz who got his first taste of the 2020-spec engine on his R1. Local rider Alvaro Bautista was ninth fastest having sat out the faster morning session, ahead of former team-mate Chaz Davies, while Leandro Mercado prepared for Motocorsa Ducati’s WorldSBK debut in 11th.

Leon Haslam was 12th best on the second of the Hondas, ahead of Garrett Gerloff on the best of the GRT Junior Yamahas, Maximilian Scheib, Federico Caricasulo, Sandro Cortese and Sylvain Barrier.

In the WorldSSP class, Jules Cluzel topped the timesheets ahead of Corentin Perolari and Steven Odendaal.