Rea and Davies trade wins, Cortese proves his mettle, and WorldSSP300 and STK1000 kick off their seasons
The Spanish circuit of MotorLand Aragon was the host to Round Three of the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship. After two stunning rounds in Australia and Thailand, the European season kicked off with Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) holding a two-point lead over Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) in second, having previously been off the top of the leaderboard for the first time since he joined Kawasaki.
Pressure was at peak levels at MotorLand Aragon, a winding, counter-clockwise track that has been the first European date on the calendar since 2013. None better than local man Xavi Fores (Barni Racing Team) to unveil the secrets of the Spanish circuit, so hop onboard with him and experience the twists and turns of Aragon.
Race One saw a thrilling four-way battle for the win, with Rea just too good to match for his three Panigale pursuers. In the battle of the red machines behind, Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) managed to overcome both Fores and Melandri in the final two laps to take second. A sensational contest which you can relive here.
In Race Two, as they were in Thailand, the roles of the front two were reversed, with Davies this time gaining an edge over championship rival Rea. The battle between the pair went right down to the wire, with a defensive masterclass from the Welshman keeping him at the top. Another action-packed race up and down the field, with the full highlights available here.
WorldSSP saw a third winner in as many races, with newcomer to the series Sandro Cortese (Kallio Racing) putting in a strong performance to open his win account and move up to second in the standings. Take a look at how it all went down at MotorLand Aragon here.
The Spanish track also saw the two remaining championships join the fray, with a WorldSSP300 grid full of fresh faces ready to fill the space left by 2017 champion Marc Garcia. In a typically wild final lap tussle, with eight riders inside a second, Koen Meuffels (KTM Fortron Junior Team), sneaked ahead to take all 25 points in his first WorldSSP300 race. A great start to what has been an exciting and memorable season.
Finally, the STK1000 championship also kicked off at MotorLand Aragon, with Markus Reiterberger (alpha Racing-Van Zon-BMW) making a triumphant return to the European championship by taking pole position, the fastest lap and an all-important race win.
Take a trip down memory lane and relive the best moments from the Pirelli Aragon Round thanks to WorldSBK VideoPass.