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Old September 16th, 2018, 10:47 AM   #1
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[kropotkin thinks...] - A Lap Of Portimao With Eugene Laverty

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Portimao is one of the most exciting laps of the year for a WorldSBK rider. The Portuguese circuit is used extensively for winter testing. Last month's official test also offered the majority of the field fine tune their settings for their return to action.

The circuit, nestled in the hills of the Algarve, is testing for riders. There's a bit of everything here and getting your eye in and getting the most from the circuit takes time.

“Portimao is my favorite track in the world,” said an enthusiastic Eugene Laverty. “It's something unique! I’ve done so many laps around this place over the years that I know this place like the back of my hand. At some tracks you need the bike to work in a certain way to be fast because the rider is limited in what they can do - this place is the opposite! It's so up and down that you can sit forwards, backwards and ride around the bike around to find a big chunk of time here. The rider makes the difference at Portimao.

“I remember in 2009 a lot of people had written me off. I had two bad years in 250GP but Parkalgar picked me up. Simon Buckmaster never forgot that I was fighting with Crutchlow and Camier and the guys that were doing well in BSB at the time. They picked me up and turned my career around. I went from a career that may never have made it back to world championship level to winning my second race in WorldSSP, and those memories never go away. The fairy tale of winning the last race in 2009 here when we had a shot of the championship is one of my best ever memories. You always look back with rose-tinted glasses to those memories but I went from two of the worst years of my career to two of the best with Parkalgar.”

Bump and blind

Memories and experience are key at Portimao with so many blind corners and sections of the lap where you need to understand where the bumps are.

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