Lowes and van der Mark departed the previous round in Magny-Cours as they'd started it, with the Briton lying third in the series standings but with only a five-point advantage over his Dutch teammate. The Pata Yamaha riders will also need to keep a close eye on Toprak Razgatlioglu, whose two race wins last time out in Magny-Cours saw him close to within 19 points of Lowes, making it a three-way battle for the final step of the championship podium in Qatar.
GRT Yamaha Supported WorldSBK rider, Marco Melandri, is excited to return to Argentina and Circuito San Juan Villicum, a track he rates as one of the most fun to ride on the WorldSBK calendar. Melandri is looking to build on his results last time out in Magny-Cours, where the veteran Italian finished both feature races inside the top ten, with sixth in WorldSBK Race 2 his best placing of the weekend.
Sandro Cortese finished on the podium in the WorldSSP race in Argentina 12 months ago, but the track is another at which the German rider will be making his debut aboard the GRT Yamaha YZF-R1 this season. Cortese is hoping for good weather in which to adapt to the demands of the Superbike during free practice on Friday, as he looks to rediscover his form after the changeable weather saw the reigning Supersport World Champion endure a difficult weekend last time out in Magny-Cours.
Loris Baz is another rider looking forward to returning to South America this weekend. Baz and the Ten Kate Yamaha Supported WorldSBK team have gone from strength to strength since returning to WorldSBK in Jerez and both rider and team have shown real podium potential. A top-three finish has so far eluded them, but Baz remains determined to stand on the podium at least once this season and the Frenchman heads into the Argentina weekend knowing he has only six races remaining in which to achieve his goal.
The Circuito San Juan Villicum runs anticlockwise and features 11 left and 8 right-hand corners along its 4.276km length. The track is adjacent to the iconic Route 40 road, which runs for 5,000km from the north to the south of Argentina along the length of the Andes. Construction of the track was started in 2016 with work completed last year, just in time to host the 2018 WorldSBK round, which was the first international event to be held at the circuit.