WSBK: Jerez Race 1 Results
The first race at the Spanish round of the WSBK Championship has finished, who has crossed the line victorious in a tight title fight?
First and foremost, I would like to say my thoughts go out to the Viñales family after the death of Dean Berta Viñales. RIP Dean 2006 - 2021.
Before I talk about the race, I must cover some housekeeping about how the grid looks for this weekend, this is because there are a couple of changes. First of all, Chaz Davies, the Welshman who announced his retirement on Thursday, has been ruled out injured for this weekend which means that Loris Baz has come in to replace him. The second rider that has been ruled out injured is Tom Sykes, replacing Tom this weekend is Eugene Laverty. Finally, Lucas Mahias will out the rest of the season due to an injury he picked up earlier on in the season at Assen.
Superpole (Qualifying) Results:
The Championship leaders are split by one single point going into the first race at Jerez, these riders are of course Toprak Razgatlioglu and Jonathan Rea. However, Toprak came out on top in qualifying as he claimed pole position at Jerez. Jonathan Rea started on the front row in 3rd place.
The man who is third in the Championship, but sixty points behind Toprak, is Ducati rider, Scott Redding. For the first race at Jerez, where Scott won twice last season, Redding started in 4th place.
The battle for fourth in the Championship is realistically split by three riders: Michael Ruben Rinaldi, Andrea Locatelli and Alex Lowes. These three riders who were 4th, 5th and 6th before the race were all separated by only 26 points. Michael Ruben Rinaldi started race 1 in 5th, Andrea Locatelli started race 1 in 6th and Alex Lowes started race 1 in 2nd place!
Loris Baz, who returns to WSBK this weekend, had an impressive qualifying as he started race 1 in 7th place! The two riders sat next to Baz were the Honda duo of Leon Haslam (8th) and Alvaro Bautista (9th).
The BMWs had a poor qualifying as they lock out row 5. Michael van der Mark qualified 13th, Jonas Folger qualified 14th and Eugene Laverty in 15th.
Race 1 Results:
PATA YAMAHA WITH BRIXX WORLDSBK:
Let's start with the team that are leading the Riders Championship, Manufacturers Championship and Teams Championship. The rider that is leading the Championship is of course Toprak Ratzgatlioglu, who is now a race winner at Jerez! Toprak started on pole, and he got off to an absolutely beautiful start! However, on lap one Toprak was demoted down to second. But Toprak and one other rider had the best pace out of anybody and by lap six they were on the charge and had broken the field! Lap seven and Toprak wanted to take the lead, but he collided with his Championship rival as they battled for the lead. After this Ratzgatlioglu settled down and looked like he did not have the pace to keep with first place, but on lap fourteen he was back and slid underneath first place into turn one! Toprak led the rest of the race until the end as he claimed his ninth win this season!
The ultimate wing man this season is Andrea Locatelli. The World Superbike rookie is currently sat fifth in the Championship, but he is doing everything he can to help his teammate to win the World Championship. At the start of the race Locatelli was breaking with Toprak and the race leader. However, after a while Andrea dropped back but he still held third. Locatelli impressively rode his way round in third until the last lap when a Ducati pipped him for the podium.
KAWASAKI RACING TEAM WORLDSBK:
The six-time World Champion, Jonathan Rea, was the rider that Toprak battled with all race long. At one point it did look like Jonathan had done enough to win the race. However, he obviously had not as Toprak appeared again and snatched the win out of Rea's grasps. But of course, Rea would not go down without a fight and did try a move, but sadly for the reigning Champion the move did not work, so he had to settle with second place for the first race of two.
Alex Lowes had a disastrous race, which could be due to his broken bones across his whole body. Alex started in second and made a complete mess of the start as the front end of his Kawasaki ZX-10RR went up into the air. But after this there is not much more to say about Alex. This is because Lowes just never got into the groove, and he finished down in ninth place! It has now been announced that Lowes will not race later on today.
Aruba.it Racing - Ducati:
If Scott Redding could sort out his pace at the start of the race, then he would be able to challenge for more race wins! Redding started in fourth place and had the late race pace to run with Toprak and Rea, but he had been in behind Andrea Locatelli all race. It took Scott until the last lap to make a pass on Andrea, which is just too little too late if Scott wants to challenge for the Championship, as he is now 69 points off the Championship lead.
Michael Ruben Rinaldi made a good start from fifth place on the grid, and he was up into the top three and he was looking very strong. This was until lap five when Rinaldi hit the deck in such a strange crash!
Now this is a shame for Honda because their bike is now working, but in the hands of Alvaro Bautista the man who is leaving Honda for Ducati. Bautista came storming through from ninth on the grid to battle his way up to fifth place after he crossed the line. This shows that the Honda does have pace in the hands of a capable rider!
Leon Haslam started off well and was also battling with his teammate for fifth. But in the middle and latter stages of the race Leon just dropped like a stone! By the time he crossed the line he was down in eleventh place! Surely something was not right with the bike or with Leon!
Team GoEleven - Ducati:
The replacement rider, Loris Baz, has come back across from America to replace the injured Chaz Davies for the next two rounds. Baz arrived back in World Superbike's with no sort of expectations, but he exceeded what everyone thought he would be able to do, this is the first time Baz has raced in Europe all season long, and he smashed it as he finished in sixth place!
BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team:
Michael van der Mark started down in thirteenth place, which is not a great starting position for the top BMW rider. But in the race Michael managed to turn his poor qualifying position into a good race position as he finished seventh place, which is a decent result for Michael.
Eugene Laverty is in this weekend as he replaces the injured Tom Sykes. Eugene started the race in fifteenth place. But Eugene had a good result of twelfth which is good since he has been out of Superbikes for half of the year.
The Motocorsa Racing rider, Axel Bassani, has become a revelation in recent weeks and recent races! Another good result of eighth place continues to show that if Axel was on better machinery, he has the potential to be a front runner for every race!
GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team:
Garrett Gerloff has been struggling with his confidence since Assen, where he took out Toprak. But slowly the old Gerloff is on his way back. The young American started the race in tenth, which is where he ended up finishing. Hopefully, Garrett can find his way back up to the front soon enough.
Kohta Nozane continues his average rookie season in World Superbikes. Kohta started the race in sixteenth and did manage to work his way up from sixteenth to thirteenth, which is good points for the young Japanese rider.
Bonovo MGM Racing:
Jonas Folger has not had an easy time since he joined BMW for the 2021 season. Jonas started the first race at Jerez in fourteenth place, which is also where he finished. Jonas has just not been able to click with the BMW this season.
Gil Motor Sport-Yamaha:
Christophe Ponsson started down in twentieth place and it looked like it would be another poor weekend for Christophe. However, he did manage to score a singular point in race one after he finished fifteenth.
Marvin Fritz had another race where he finished outside of the points. He started the race down in eighteenth and finished the race in sixteenth.
OUTDO TPR Team Pedercini Racing:
Another poor weekend for the Pedercini Kawasaki Team. Loris Cresson started down in twenty first and only finished in seventeenth.
Lachlan Epis started last in twenty second. On lap five Epis pulled into the pits but appeared again on lap ten. He most likely came back out to gain more data for the team and himself.
Andrea Mantovani started down in nineteenth and finished down in eighteenth. There is not a lot to say about Andrea's time in World Superbike's.
MIE Racing Honda Racing:
Leandro Mercado had a very good qualifying of eleventh place, and he was running in the top twelve. But Leandro's handlebar seemingly snapped off on the right side as he was riding around.
Barni Racing Team:
Samuele Cavalieri started in seventeenth but on lap five he found himself down in the gravel as he through his Ducati down the road!