During World Superbike pre-season testing in Barcelona during the first week of April, 2021, Pata Yamaha with Brixx rider Toprak Razgatlıoğlu tested positive for COVID-19. He was administered a pre-travel polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test, which came back positive. The rest of his team was also tested at the same time, with their results coming back negative. Subsequent PCR tests on the team have also come back negative.
So far, Razgatlıoğlu has been quarantining in an apartment in Barcelona, which is both the city where the test was administered and also where pre-season testing took place. As of April 8, he remained completely asymptomatic. As long as that continues to be the case, he will take another PCR test on Saturday, April 10, in hopes that he can move on to join his team at the Aragon test on April 12 and 13.
“Toprak is isolating in a nice apartment in Barcelona and feels completely fine, with no Covid symptoms. We have been in touch every day, he looks well and is keeping a good attitude, despite a little boredom,” team principal Paul Denning said in a statement.
“We have to thank our local friend Handan Kilnc for arranging the apartment and taking such good care. Toprak will have another PCR test on Saturday – based on the result of this PCR test and a general medical test, we will then take a decision regarding the planned Aragon test next week.”
As for Razgatlıoğlu himself, he echoed Denning’s sentiments. “The good news is that I feel good! Firstly, I’d like to thank everyone for their kind messages, also the team and Handan Kilnc for making sure I’m as comfortable as possible.
“Obviously it’s been very boring here, but I’m also happy to have a nice place to live in, while I wait for a negative test result. I’m hoping that I’ll get a chance to join the team for the first Aragon test, but we will see what the situation is after Saturday.”
At an earlier pre-season testing date in Misano, Italy, Team Go Eleven Ducati rider Chaz Davies also ended up missing the event after a positive COVID-19 test. Test rider Michele Pirro took his place during those two days of testing, and Davies recovered, tested negative, and has since rejoined his team in the WSBK paddock.
While the entire MotoGP paddock was able to get vaccinated thanks to a generous offer by the State Government of Qatar in March, there has so far not been a similar paddock-wide event in WSBK. Here’s wishing Razgatlıoğlu and everyone else the best of health going forward.