Elated Gerloff reacts after Misano changes work in Catalunya: "I can’t believe it… that’s super positive!"

Friday, 25 March 2022 18:27 GMT

After running at the front throughout day one of the test, an upbeat Gerloff reacted to his day and the strong pace shown

Garrett Gerloff’s (GRT GYRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) strong off-season form continued at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya as he claimed third spot and finished as the top Yamaha runner as testing continued ahead of the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship season starting in April.

The American had led at various points throughout the day but found himself pipped to top spot by Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati) and then Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) at the end of the day. Despite losing positions in the standings, the American finished as the top Yamaha rider as he beat reigning Champion Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK).

Gerloff’s best time was a 1’41.229s, four tenths away from Bautista’s time and racked up 78 laps despite a Turn 10 crash during the day as he, and his GRT Yamaha team, looked to focus on refining the setup of his Yamaha YZF-R1 machine as well as look at the electronic settings of his bike.

Reacting to a strong first day, Gerloff said: “It was really good. I was really happy with all the changes made at Misano, and I can’t believe it, but they actually worked here too so that’s super positive! When we first started, I was actually shocked with how little grip the track had but it seemed it was coming better all day but the Yamaha R1 was working the whole time, so I’ve got a smile on my face.”

Throughout testing, Yamaha have been bringing electronic updates to improve their package as they look to defend all three titles that they won in 2021. As well as electronic updates, the GRT Yamaha team have been able to test a new subframe and fuel tank with the Independent team looking to retain their Independent Teams’ title from 2021.

Explaining the changes to his bike at the test, Gerloff said: “Every track we go to now is big electronics test just because it’ll be the first time we’ve ever done laps with it. We’ve made a lot of big steps with that, but the biggest thing we were doing is confirming the stuff that we liked at Misano on a track with less grip. Probably it’ll be similar to this at all the other tracks in the summer when it gets hotter. That was positive. I was pretty consistent and race pace was good. We got around 10 laps and I felt good the whole time, I felt consistent. Tyres dropped off a little bit but that’s when I like it, when everything starts working for me.”

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