Rea has his cake and eats it: 100th Kawasaki victory for Rea in thrilling Assen Superpole Race

Sunday, 24 April 2022 09:42 GMT

A last-lap pass for the lead adds more records to Jonathan Rea’s records as he racks up a century of victories for Kawasaki

The Tissot Superpole Race at the Motul Dutch Round was another thrilling battle in the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship as Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) claimed a historic victory in a shortened race. The win for the six-time Champion means he has now claimed 100 wins for a single manufacturer, the first rider to do so in WorldSBK and adding to his already-incredible record at the TT Circuit Assen at the Motul Dutch Round.

FRONT ROW FOR RACE 2: claiming a top three finish in the Superpole Race

The race was reduced from ten laps to nine when Gabriele Ruiu (Bmax Racing) had an issue on the grid, forcing the original start to be delayed and the race distance reduced by one lap. Rea was able to make the move for victory on the final lap against Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati) at Turn 8 to take his 100th victory for Kawasaki, something he was hoping to get a cake for. Bautista finished second after fighting from fifth on the grid, and passed Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) at the high-speed Turn 6 for the lead of the race at that time before Rea moved into the lead on the final lap. Rea will therefore lead Bautista and Razgatlioglu from the front row in Race 2. The drama did not stop there, though, with Bautista given a one place penalty for a track limits infringement on the final lap, promoting Razgatlioglu to second with Bautista third.

LINING UP FROM THE SECOND ROW: just missing out on the front row

Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) claimed fourth place and will line up there from Race 2 on Sunday afternoon, ahead of rookie Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) in fifth place after another strong performance from the Honda rider. Locatelli’s fourth place means Italian riders have now finished in that position eight times in the last nine races and the fifth time in a row. French rider Loris Baz (Bonovo Action BMW) claimed sixth spot, finishing as the best Independent rider, to complete the second row for Race 2.

LAUNCHING FROM THE THIRD ROW FOR RACE 2: positions 7-9 in Race 2

American star Garrett Gerloff (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) will lead away the third row in Race 2 after claiming seventh spot, finishing ahead of Michael Ruben Rinaldi ( Racing – Ducati) in eighth. Rinaldi will start from the third row after battling his way up from 12th on the grid, ahead of fellow Italian rider Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing) in ninth; Bassani completing the third row for Race 2.

HOUSEKEEPING: to note from the Superpole Race

Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) was running inside the top nine throughout the race, but a technical issue at the start of the ninth and final lap meant he was forced to retire from the race. As he qualified inside the top nine during the Tissot Superpole session on Saturday, but didn’t finish there, he will start Race 2 from tenth.

The top nine following the Tissot Superpole Race, full results here:

1. Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK)

2. Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati) +0.220s

3. Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) +0.267s

4. Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) +6.959s

5. Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) +11.997s

6. Loris Baz (Bonovo Action BMW) +12-953s

7. Garrett Gerloff (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) +13.410s

8. Michael Ruben Rinaldi ( Racing – Ducati) +13.512s

9. Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing) +13.871s

Fastest Lap (New Lap Record) – Alvaro Bautista, Ducati: 1’33.620s 

Watch WorldSBK Race 2 from Assen at 15:15 Local Time (GMT+2) using the WorldSBK VideoPass!