The PETRONAS MIE Racing Honda Team has completed an intense testing session at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve in Portugal with its Superbike riders Tarran Mackenzie and Adam Norrodin.
This was the team’s first test of 2024 as it gears up to compete in the Superbike World Championship, round one of which will take place in a little under a month’s time, at Phillip Island in Australia.
Having had little track time aboard the Superbike, category rookies Mackenzie and Norrodin – who both competed in the Supersport class last season with the same squad – did their best to maximise this opportunity in order to collate valuable data and provide their technicians with precious feedback regarding the behaviour and performance of the CBR1000RR-R at a track they both know well. With most of the SBK teams testing on track alongside the PETRONAS MIE Racing Honda Team, the riders also had a first chance to weigh up the competition ahead of round 1.
The team will continue to make preparations back at base before travelling to Australia mid-February for the final winter test sessions, taking place at the Phillip Island Circuit on 19-20 February, which will be followed almost immediately by the first round of the 2024 racing season, on 23-25 February, at the same track.
“This test was mainly about getting used to the new bike, which for now is a mix of 2023 and 2024 parts, for a variety of reasons. We should have the full 2024 spec ready in time for Phillip Island. I ran in the engine this morning before making some laps this afternoon and working with the 2024 parts, so we now have some data we can use. We worked out a few small issues during the session and I think some of the new electronic components can really help too; I could see an improvement there. Unfortunately, today was cut a little short after I crashed but, like I say, it’s a matter of working to understand what we have and how we can exploit it.”
“I’m happy with what has been my first real test, considering we didn’t complete many laps last time out at Jerez. We only really had a few hours in which to set up the bike, after running in the engine this morning and mounting some new parts yesterday, so we’re running a little behind everyone else. We improved every time we went out on track, but we still have a lot of work ahead of us. Everything is new for me, so there are many things I need to understand. We will receive some new parts in time for Phillip Island, which I hope can offer better feeling.”