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Eazi Grip

World Superbikes Weekend Report

Superpole

Jonathan Rea claimed his fifth consecutive pole position to start the 2021 season as Championship leader Razgatlioglu qualifies second despite a Superpole crash.

A 15-minute session full of twists, turns and drama for the Tissot Superpole session in the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship at the TT Circuit Assen for the Prosecco DOC Dutch Round at the TT Circuit Assen as Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) claimed his fifth pole in a row since the start of the 2021 season.

THE FRONT ROW

Rea went to the top of the timesheets early on in the session, although did lose his first lap time following Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK) bringing out yellow flags with a crash at Turn 16 as he looked to pass teammate Andrea Locatelli. Rea was able to set a 1’33.842s on his second run on the qualifying tyre to claim pole position; his fifth in a row, giving him the fourth-best all-time streak of pole positions.

Razgatlioglu’s crash in the early stages of the 15-minute session meant he was on the back foot heading into the final runs of the Tissot Superpole session, but was able to post a lap time of 1’34.028s, missing out on pole position by two tenths but able to claim second place on the grid for Race 1. Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati), looking to bounce back from a difficult Donington, will also start from the front row after showing strong pace all weekend.

COMPLETING THE TOP TEN

Redding’s teammate, Michael Ruben Rinaldi, will start from fourth place after a strong showing in Superpole, with the Italian running as high as second throughout the session. Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) claimed a second row start ahead of Jonas Folger (Bonovo MGM Action); the German securing his best-ever WorldSBK Superpole result.

Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK) also claimed his best ever Superpole result with seventh place, with the Italian running inside the top three at various points throughout the weekend. Leon Haslam (Team HRC) will start Race 1 from eighth place with Michael van der Mark (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) in ninth after the Dutchman endured a difficult Free Practice 3 earlier in the day. Alvaro Bautista (Team HRC) will start Race 1 from tenth, with Tito Rabat (Barni Racing Team) 11th.

TO NOTE

Despite showing strong pace on Friday and Saturday morning, Chaz Davies (Team GoEleven) will start Race 1 from 13th place just behind Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing). Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK) did not set a representative lap time after he suffered a technical issue on his BMW M 1000 RR machine in the early stages of the session, while Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) did not set a lap time at all after he crashed at Turn 2 on his first flying lap.

The top six following WorldSBK Tissot Superpole

1. Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK)
2. Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK) +0.186s
3. Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +0.211s
4. Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +0.225s
5. Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) +0.410s
6. Jonas Folger (Bonovo MGM Racing) +0.494s

Race 1

Rea prevails in WorldSBK title fight as he becomes the first rider in history to win at one track 13 times.

As the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship returned to the TT Circuit Assen, a titanic three-way battle for the podium welcomed fans back to the circuit as Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) continued to make history with his 13th victory in Race 1 at the Prosecco DOC Dutch Round.

It means Rea becomes the first rider in WorldSBK history to win 13 times at a single circuit, having converted pole position into a win after he held off the challenge from his nearest rivals to claim more WorldSBK history. The race was Red Flagged with just a few of the scheduled 21 laps following a crash for Jonas Folger (Bonovo MGM Action) at Turns 6 and 7; after the German rider was on course for a career best WorldSBK result. Folger was conscious and taken to the medical centre for a check-up following the crash. The German rider will be transported to Assen Hospital for further assessments and has been declared unfit for the remainder of the round.

LIGHTS OUT AND A BATTLE FROM THE OFF

Polesitter Rea lost out from the start to Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK), with the Championship leader able to jump Rea on the run down to Turn 1. The Turkish star then ran wide through Turn 4, allowing Rea back through with the six-time Champion tried to break away but to no avail.

Rea’s start and Razgatlioglu running wide allowed Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) to challenge the leaders but his race soon came to an end after he crashed at Turn 8 on Lap 3, forcing the Italian to retire from the race. It was the same corner that Alvaro Bautista (Team HRC) had a crash at a lap earlier which put the Spanish rider out of the race.

It allowed Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati), who has shown glimpses of strong pace throughout the weekend so far, was able to close in on Razgatlioglu and Rea, before Rea made his move on Razgatlioglu on Lap 5. Three laps later, Redding made the move on Razgatlioglu at the same corner, the fast right-hander of Turn 6, demoting Razgatlioglu to third.

AN ONGOING TITANIC BATTLE

There was nothing to separate the lead trio as the race entered the second half of the 21-lap encounter although a mistake from Redding allowed Razgatlioglu through for second place, but it also allowed Rea to jump ahead by a couple of seconds ahead of the battling duo, with Razgatlioglu and Redding continue to fight until the end; Redding finishing the race in second place ahead of Razgatlioglu after passing the Turkish star on Lap 16 to secure second place.

Home hero Michael van der Mark (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) claimed a stunning fourth after battling his way up from ninth on the grid, taking advantage of the crashes to Rinaldi and Bautista as well as Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK), with Lowes crashing at Turn 5 on Lap 3. Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK) equalled his best WorldSBK result to date with fifth. Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team finished in sixth place after starting from 21st; the American did not set a lap time in the Tissot Superpole Session. Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) started one position ahead of Gerloff, after a technical issue in Superpole, but finished one place behind the American in seventh. Leon Haslam (Team HRC) claimed eighth place with Chaz Davies (Team GoEleven) and Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing) claiming ninth and tenth respectively.

COMPLETING THE POINTS

Isaac Viñales (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) claimed his best WorldSBK result to date with Leandro Mercado (MIE Racing Honda Team) returning to the points after him and MIE Racing opted to miss some rounds to focus on improving the bike. Loris Cresson (OUTDO TPR Team Pedercini Racing) claimed his first WorldSBK points with 13th place, taking advantage of wildcard Andrea Mantovani (Vince64)’s double Long Lap Penalty being converted into a ride through penalty after he did not take his Long Lap Penalties.

TO NOTE

Tito Rabat (Barni Racing Team) was a late-race retirement after he brought his Ducati machine back to the pitlane. Kohta Nozane (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) crashed out of the final chicane while Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) also crashed out, at Turn 15; both Nozane and Mahias crashed on Lap 13.

The top six following WorldSBK Race 1 at the last completed lap

1. Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK)

2. Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +3.093s

3. Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK) +3.214s

4. Eazi-Grip supported Michael van der Mark (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) +4.478s

5. Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK) +6.139s

6. Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) +7.901s

Fastest Lap: Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) 1’34.654s

Race 2

Jonathan Rea battled back from eighth place after Turn 1 to claim his 15th victory at Assen while Andrea Locatelli came home third for his first ever WorldSBK podium

A dramatic Race 2 at the TT Circuit Assen in the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship came to an end with Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) claiming his third win of the Prosecco DOC Dutch Round and the fourth hat-trick of his career despite finding himself in eighth place after Turn 1 after starting from first. Behind him, Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) came home in second with rookie Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK) claiming his maiden podium.

LIGHTS OUT AND RAZGATLIOGLU’S OUT

Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK) got a good start but found himself out of the race after American Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) made contact with the Turkish rider at Turn 1, with the American placed under investigation for the incident by the FIM WorldSBK Stewards and given a ride-through penalty for the incident. The crash forced Razgatlioglu out of the race.

The incident forced Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) down into eighth place while Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK), running the SCX tyre, found himself leading a WorldSBK race for the first time in his short career. It took until the fourth lap for Rea to be back in second place, as he looked to secure a hat-trick at Assen. Locatelli led the first half of the race as Rea closed the gap to Locatelli with the six-time Champion able to take the lead on Lap 12 of 21, with Rea on the SC0 tyre, on the run to Turn 1.Rea’s victory means he is now on 199 WorldSBK podiums, one away from a historical 200 podiums.

Locatelli was able to stick with Rea for the next few laps, but Rea soon found himself extending the lead over the rookie, with Locatelli having to start watch out for Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) in third as the British rider closed in. On Lap 19, Redding made his move in the final sector of the lap to move into second place, with Locatelli coming home in third for his maiden WorldSBK podium. Locatelli becomes the first WorldSSP Champion to claim a WorldSBK podium as a rookie since Michael van der Mark (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) in 2015, also at Assen.

COMPLETING THE TOP TEN

Chaz Davies (Team GoEleven) missed out on his 100th WorldSBK podium on his 200th start for Ducati with fourth place after charging through the field, fending off the challenge from Alvaro Bautista (Team HRC) by just one second with the Spanish rider claiming his best result of the season so far.

Behind Bautista, there was a titanic battle for sixth place that culminated with Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) crashing out at the final chicane while battling with teammate Michael van der Mark, Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) and Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati); Rinaldi falling down the order as he selected the SCX tyre. Dutchman van der Mark claimed sixth ahead of Lowes and Rinaldi. Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing) claimed another top ten finish with ninth as Leon Haslam (Team HRC) rounded out the top ten.

ROUNDING OUT THE POINTS

Tito Rabat (Barni Racing Team) claimed 11th place in Race 2 at Assen with Kohta Nozane (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) securing another points-paying position with 12. Leandro Mercado (MIE Racing Honda Team) was 13th on his return to the Championship after undergoing a testing programme with the team. Isaac Viñales (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) finished in 14th place, ending a run of results for the Spanish rider of finishing in odd-numbered positions, while Sykes claimed 15th after his crash.

Andrea Mantovani (Vince64) missed out on a second points finish of the weekend with 16th place, with Loris Cresson (OUTDO TPR Team Pedercini Racing) the last of the classified runners. Gerloff’s race came to an end after he had taken his ride-through penalty after he crashed at turn 9 on his Yamaha machine, joining Razgatlioglu as a retirement from Race 2.

The top six following WorldSBK Race 2

  1. Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK)
  2. Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +1.605s
  3. Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK) +3.431s
  4. Eazi-Grip supported Chaz Davies (Team GoEleven) +8.695s
  5. Alvaro Bautista (Team HRC) +9.584s
  6. Eazi-Grip supported Michael van der Mark (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) +12.691s

Fastest Lap Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 1’34.689s

Championship standings

  1. Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 243 points
  2. Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with BRIXX WorldSBK) 206
  3. Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) 162
  4. Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 127
  5. Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) 111
  6. Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) 105

Posted on Tuesday, July 27th, 2021 in News

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