The final testing session of the year for Team HRC factory riders Xavi Vierge and Iker Lecuona at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve in Portugal, was unfortunately thwarted by overnight and early morning rain.
The riders have been quite busy lately, having recently traveled to Indonesia for an enjoyable and productive event with Motul, and then to Japan for an appearance at the HRC Thanks Day dinner. Afterward, they flew back to Portugal with the aim of continuing preparations for the 2024 WorldSBK season. Despite being unable to ride due to the inclement weather, they took the opportunity to participate in some crucial technical meetings with their crews and Japanese engineers who will continue working in Japan.
Vierge and Lecuona will now take a well-deserved break, returning to the track for their next scheduled test in January 2024.
"Today's track conditions were less than ideal, with overnight rain leaving the track damp but not wet enough for a comprehensive test in full rainy conditions - said Vierge - So, we decided to save the day for the next year. However, we had some positive tests in Jerez just a few days ago, giving us a chance to get a first feeling of the new bike, which marks a positive step in the right direction. While we acknowledge the need for more time to understand how to take full advantage of the new parts, overall, we believe it represents a positive step in the right direction. The upcoming months will afford us the opportunity to continue refining the bike in preparation for the next year. Once again, a big thank you to the team and the factory for their huge effort this year. Let's go for it in the next one!"
"Unfortunately, despite having perfect weather conditions yesterday when we arrived here, a few hours of rain in the early morning today created those kind of track conditions that were neither fully wet nor completely dry - added Lecuona - This made it impossible to carry out a proper test. Nevertheless, we managed to hold some useful technical meetings with the Japanese engineers to discuss the areas where we still want to make improvements. I'm confident they'll continue working hard during the winter, and I want to express my gratitude to everyone at HRC and my team for their commitment. Now, it's time for me to head back home, take some much-needed rest after a super busy year, and recharge for the next season."