Ten Kate Yamaha Supported WorldSBK rider, Loris Baz, had his fastest lap of the day disallowed and, as a result, ended the day in 13th position, while GRT Yamaha's Marco Melandri was frustrated to finish one place further back in 14th.
While circuit staff deployed brushes and air blowers in an attempt to clean the surface yesterday, their efforts and equipment proved woefully inadequate, with the result that track conditions remained treacherous as the riders took to the track for WorldSBK FP1 this morning. Many riders, having inspected the track immediately prior to the start of the session, opted to sit out most of the 50-minute practice, rather than risk injury on a track where grip was severely compromised by the dirty surface.
Conditions improved slightly for FP2, with a very narrow clean line appearing around the track, but times were still two seconds slower than the same session last year, despite almost perfect weather conditions. Deviation from the cleaned line resulted in a dramatic reduction in grip and a proportional increase in risk, as some riders discovered to their cost today.
With the track set to improve with more laps tomorrow, rendering anything learnt today irrelevant, the five Yamaha WorldSBK riders opted for a cautious approach, rather than risking all by chasing a fast lap time in the unpredictable conditions today.
To aid the teams and riders adapt to the changing track conditions, tomorrow's third and final free practice session has been extended by 15 minutes.