Davies and Rutter get in the laps ahead of the world and British season openers

Chaz Davies and Michael Rutter have both been out testing their brand new machines as 2021 motorbike campaigns near.

Davies, from Mid Wales, jumped on his new Ducati V4RS-2021 for the first time in Catalan, Spain, in preparation for the World Superbike opener.

Meanwhile, Bridgnorth's Rutter, returning team rider Taylor Mackenzie and the Black Country-based Bathams Racing team travelled to Darley Moor, in Derbyshire, to test out the latest BMW M1000RR on Sunday – coming away with a win and five podiums between them.

Davies, who has switched from Aruba.it Racing – Ducati to Team Go Eleven this year, set the ninth fastest time during the two-day test.

During the morning of the second day, the 340year-old managed to improve his feeling with the bike and went almost 0.4 seconds faster than on day one.

Davies, despite the long break due to Covid restrictions, said he felt in good shape as he focussed on getting to grips the new bike's geometry and electronics.

But during the final afternoon session his focus switched to perfecting the bike's launch control and trying out the new race tyres,

He eventually posted a time 1.053 seconds slower than pace setter and reigning champion Jonathan Rea, to end the session ninth fastest.

Davies said: "It was a pretty productive day. We started with a good bike and it immediately felt good.

"Then we started working a little bit on the second bike, which has a couple of different parts on it.

"I am just trying to understand if there is something that can help us for the season.

"I did a bit of jumping around between bike one and bike two and we also did a lot of work on the electronics, trying to give me more feel with the engine.

"That was quite successful but we just started the work and we collected important data.

"In the next week the most important thing is to understand what is the bike doing with the electronic changes and try to develop that for Aragon test.

"I think it was a successful first test. Having not ridden for five months my expectations were quite modest and I had no target apart to enjoy the two days and ride again.

"We did that. Next test it will be an opportunity for everybody to work together and refind things that we were working on!"

Meanwhile, Bathams Racing gave the new and highly-anticipated BMW M1000RR its race debut at Darley Moor MCRCC in the hands of Taylor Mackenzie yesterday.

Having recently taken delivery of the ultra exclusive machine, Rutter said the team could not wait to try it out and had been working hard behind the scenes to get it ready to race at round two of the Darley Moor championship.

With the M1000RR race ready, Mackenzie rode the machine while being supported by team manager Rutter, who was out on the older BMW S1000RR.

And in the opening Allcomers class race, for bikes with engines up to 1300cc, Bathams Racing secured two podiums with Mackenzie on the top step and Rutter third.

The pair – who will both be competing in the National Superstock 1000 class when the British Superbike season returns in June – were back out again the Open solos/Pre-injection open class, and this time Rutter got the better of this team-mate, finishing one place ahead in second while posting the fastest lap of the race.

Rutter again showed he still has plenty of pace as he nears his 49th birthday picking up another second in the final Open solos/Pre-injection open class race – again posting the fastest lap –with Mackenzie this time slipping to fourth.

Rutter said: "The racing at Darley Moor was just brilliant and a lot of fun. Even 32 years after I started racing, lining up on a grid waiting for the race to start is still the best feeling ever.

"I only did one race last season at Brands Hatch, so it's safe to say I wasn't at my best – it's been about 18months since I did any regular racing and I'm not getting any younger.

"I really should know better, and I wish I was 10 years younger!

"It's a shame we couldn't get our second M1000RR turned around in time for this weekend but to be honest the new M1000RR is so unbelievably trick we just had to race it and start getting to know it as soon as we possibly could.

"I must say thanks to BMW and our sponsors for helping us get the bike and prepare it in time.

"Coming to Darley Moor to debut the bike was really special for me.

"My dad [Tony Rutter] used to come with me to Darley Moor when I first started racing 32 years ago and I think he would have loved the idea of me still travelling to the circuit early in the morning with a bike in the back of a van.

"In fact, I'm sure if he was still here he would have come along for the day to see the new bike and visit the circuit too."

Round one of the World Superbike season takes place at Aragon, Spain, May 21-23.

The BSB campaign launches at Oulton park, in Cheshire, June 25-27.

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