Jonathan Rea (KRT) added to his race one WorldSBK victory at Motorland Aragon with a second place today in race two, to extend his championship lead to 12 points. Tom Sykes (KRT) had a tough afternoon and finished sixth in the second race of a busy weekend.
With three riders eventually competing for the second race victory in Spain Rea continued to pressurise eventual winner Chaz Davies on the final lap, after Marco Melandri had suddenly dropped back to a distant third.
Rea was to run wide into the entry of the chicane at turn 12 and lose his chance to attack Davies on the long final corner. Rea was just 1.184 seconds back at the flag, for his fourth podium finish of the 2018 season.
In warmer and sunnier conditions today than Saturday, the small advantages that Rea felt had helped him win race one were reduced a little. He also had to fight his way forward in the first lap from a third row starting position, under the reverse grid rules that operate for race two.
He is now 12 points clear of Davies in the championship table, with arguably Jonathan’s favourite round at Assen coming up in just a few days time.
For Tom Sykes a change in weather and a front row starting position did not help him overcome an unlucky start and he was ninth after one lap. He worked his way back to sixth at the flag, despite experiencing issues with turning in the longer corners. Tom is seventh in the championship after Aragon.
The next round of the championship will take place at Assen next weekend, with races on 21st and 22nd April.
Jonathan Rea, stated: “I threw everything into the last lap but I overcooked it into turn 12. But it was fun! The set-up was pretty good, although I was struggling to stop a little bit after the rear tyre had dropped in grip; then I had reduced corner entry traction. It seemed like Chaz had the same thing but when he was making mistakes he could keep the same lap time. It seems like right now we have to be very precise all through the race, but I enjoyed it today. I had no information on how the race would pan out with the tyre choice we made, and the rise in temperature. I did not know what to expect at the end but I was really happy. I had some good tyre left and was still able to fight. Now we move onto Assen.”
Tom Sykes, stated: “I am really suffering with turning the bike and it is a shame. We are good in some areas but overall, in the long corners, I really suffered in turning and finishing off the corner. It is disappointing but I suppose it has been one of those weekends. We never got the answer and the race set-up. I am surprised at this because on Friday we had something but obviously everybody else has improved and we didn’t. I had some limit on the front tyre but overall we just missed a little bit of turning and I was not able to utilise the full grip from the rear tyre because of this. Today I could not get much more from myself and I am disappointed for this.”
2018 KRT Rider Statistics
Jonathan Rea: World Champion 2015, 2016 & 2017
2018: Races 6, Wins 2, Podiums 4, Superpoles 1
Career Race Wins: 56 (41 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 116 (74 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 15 (11 for Kawasaki)
Tom Sykes: World Champion 2013
2018: Races: 6, Wins 0, Podiums 1, Superpoles 1
Career Race Wins: 33 (33 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 101 (100 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 43 (43 for Kawasaki)
5 x Riders’ Championships (Scott Russell 1993, Sykes 2013, Rea 2015, 2016 & 2017), 1 x EVO Riders’ Championship (David Salom 2014)
3 x Manufacturers’ Championships (Ninja ZX-10R 2015 & 2016, Ninja ZX-10RR 2017)
3 x Teams’ Championships (KRT/Provec Racing 2015, 2016 & 2017)
Kawasaki FIM Superbike World Championship Statistics
Total Kawasaki Race Wins: 111 – third overall
Total Kawasaki Podiums: 353 – third overall
Total Kawasaki Poles: 75 – second overall