The three days of testing, from Wednesday 10 to Friday 12 December, will help to develop the evolution tyres that one-make supplier Pirelli is producing for next season. Kyalami will once again be the venue for a round of the championship for production-based bikes for the first time since 2002: the South African Round is scheduled for May 17 next year.
Kyalami will see a number of important debuts, in particular for BMW who shape up to their first head-to-head tests against their rivals: the four-cylinder S1000RR machines will be in the hands of Troy Corser (Australia) and Ruben Xaus (Spain). It will also be the first major test for another of the new entries in 2009, Aprilia, with their four-cylinder V65° engine RSV4 and two top riders of the calibre of Max Biaggi and Shinya Nakano.
All change also in the world champion Ducati Xerox team, where Noriyuki Haga of Japan takes over at the helm from Troy Bayliss, who retired from racing last month in Portugal.
Yamaha Motor Italia (with Ben Spies and Tom Sykes) and Suzuki Alstare (with Max Neukirchner and Yukio Kagayama) will be putting the mileage on their new 2009 bikes, while Honda Ten Kate can again count on three of their tried and tested CBR1000RR machines for Carlos Checa, Ryuichi Kiyonari and Jonathan Rea. The only factory team absent at Kyalami will be Kawasaki Paul Bird Motorsport, which is scheduled to make its testing debut next month in Spain.
The official winter test programme will continue from January 23-25 at Portimao in Portugal.
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