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YART Yamaha Make Strong Impact on First WorldSBK Day at Most

YART Yamaha Make Strong Impact on First WorldSBK Day at Most

Making a wildcard appearance in the FIM Superbike World Championship this weekend, YART Yamaha impressed the paddock at the Autodrom Most circuit, with riders Marvin Fritz and Karel Hanika going fourth and ninth fastest on Friday’s combined times.

Running slightly modified versions of the Yamaha R1 bike that they use in the FIM Endurance World Championship, the YART Yamaha squad were quick out of the blocks during the morning’s Free Practice 1 session at the Czech venue.

German rider Fritz had only run a few laps in a test earlier this year, but was immediately on the pace, briefly topping the times in the opening stages of the session. While others improved, the 2016 IDM Superbike Champion focused on gaining some experience on the Pirelli tyres, and with five minutes of FP1 remaining, the 28-year-old managed a 1’33.809, which was good enough for fourth and just 0.187s behind second. 

Home hero Hanika completed a longer stint for the first half of the 45-minute session, running 11 laps of the Most circuit before pitting. The 25-year-old moved inside the top 10 on his final run, setting the second-fastest third sector and ended FP1 in ninth, although his ‘ideal time’ (best sectors combined) would have put him seventh overall.

With rain disrupting FP2, neither of the YART Yamaha riders had a chance to improve their times, although both gained valuable knowledge of Pirelli’s wet tyres, which may come into use again this weekend. 

For Friday’s combined times, click here.

Marvin Fritz: P4 – 1’33.809

YART Yamaha

I’m really happy to be racing here for the first time in a long while. We had a one-day test here two months ago, but it was also raining and there was a lot of traffic. The most important thing was to understand the Pirelli tyres, because you have to ride in a different style. I’m super happy to be in fourth, I was so surprised to see it but it’s a great start. We lose a little bit out of the first chicane, but this track is not all down to power, it’s more about the corner speed and being good on the tyres. I think that the others will improve, but we can also make steps forward too, so I’m excited for tomorrow morning and getting underway for Race 1.

Karel Hanika: P9 – 1’34.142

YART Yamaha

It was a good day for us, it’s great to be back in WorldSBK. We have a good bike from EWC, so it’s nice to join this paddock and to be quite competitive in the dry conditions especially. We still have areas to improve, but we have an advantage in that we have more knowledge of the track now. Rain in the afternoon could give us an advantage in the race too, but we will see. We know where we are with the package, we don’t think we’ll challenge the podium places, but the goal is to take on the season regulars and score some points. FP3 tomorrow will be important to understand which tyres will be better for the races and I’m hoping to bring some good results for the Czech fans.