Only a single rider made it out on track for the opening day of official pre-season WorldSBK Championship testing as persistent rain in Jerez consigned everyone else to the pit box.

Of the 20 riders confirmed to be competing in WorldSBK this year, ten are present for the two-day test but not one would venture on circuit in tough conditions in favour of retaining it as an extra day they can use later in the year.

Topping the headlines coming into the test was the official first appearance of Moto2 World Champion and former MotoGP rider Tito Rabat, who will debut in the series with Barni Racing Ducati.

The Spaniard was photographed in his new wares ahead of the test [and in sunnier conditions] but his maiden track appearance on the Ducati Panigale V4 R is deferred until Thursday.

Of the factory teams, defending champions Kawasaki are present with Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes set to put more useful miles on the new generation Kawasaki ZX-10RR, while rivals Ducati are also present with Scott Redding and new signing Michael Ruben Rinaldi.

The man he replaced at Aruba.it Racing - Chaz Davies - is also in attendance as he prepares to make his debut in Go Eleven colours, while newly announced Team HRC boss Leon Camier begins in his new role overseeing Leon Haslam and Alvaro Bautista. Finally, rookies Loris Cresson (OUTDO Kawasaki TPR) and Isaac Vinales [ORELAC Kawasaki] were present.

The only rider to venture on track was another Orelac rider, Leonardo Taccini, who will compete with the Spanish team in the WorldSSP class.

 

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