2015 Sepang World Superbike Results
Kawasaki Racing Team’s Jonathan Rea nearly clinched his debut World Superbike title following the Malaysian round at Sepang International Circuit.
The Northern Irishman earned the win in the the first of two 16-lap races at the hot Sepang circuit, taking his 12th victory of the season. He was beat to the checkered flag in race two by Aruba.it - Ducati Racing Team’s Chaz Davies. If Rea had won, he would have clinched the title, but Ducati 1199 Panigale R rider Davies, who doubled at Laguna Seca World SBK two weeks ago, prevented this.
Regardless, the ZX-10R Ninja pilot Rea has finished on the podium at all 20 races so far in 2015 World Superbike as the series heads into a six-week summer break.
In race one, Davies finished 0.121 of a second behind Rea, and the wildcard rider - two-time World Superbike Champion Max Biaggi - earned third aboard the Aprilia Racing Team RSV4 RF. Biaggi also led Sepang SBK Friday practice.
In race two, Davies beat Rea to the line by a mere 0.091 of a second. Earning third over five seconds back was Aprilia Racing Team’s Jordi Torres.
After 10 of 13 rounds, Rea has 452 points, 144 ahead of Davies. Kawasaki Racing Team’s Tom Sykes, who earned the pole at Sepang, is in third with 295 points.
Following 2015 Sepang World Superbike, Jonathan Rea says “I’m really happy after a good weekend and happy to go into the summer break healthy and looking forward to Jerez. With three laps to go in race two Arturo my mechanic gave me a bit of a secret signal and I knew if I went then I could catch Chaz. Halfway around the last lap I realized it would be possible.
“I passed Chaz and went through clean. We had contact but I do not blame him for that – I would do the same – but I almost crashed at the same time. I am really happy because we got another first and second on a race weekend and a bagful of points. If I had won the championship here maybe my wife would not have spoken to me for a day or two because she is at home! I just wanted to have a really good weekend and we did that.”
Following are the official race recaps.
2015 Sepang World Superbike Results, Race 1 Recap
The opening race of the Pirelli Malaysian Round of the eni FIM Superbike World Championship at Sepang was won by championship leader Rea after a race of two halves saw long-time leader Sykes slip to fifth at the flag.
After five laps the gap from Sykes in the lead to the chasing pack was 2.6 seconds with Davies and Rea, who had made the best start of anyone (8th to 3rd at turn 1) in hot pursuit. Sykes meanwhile was the only rider seemingly able to lap consistently in the 2.04 seconds bracket.
As the race settled into a rhythm and with Sykes continuing to pull away the closest on track fight was between the Aprilia pairing of Leon Haslam and Biaggi who were dicing for fifth and sixth.
With four laps to go it appeared the Davies and Rea’s tires were holding up better than those long-time leader Sykes, the pair reducing the gap to less than a second – the race suddenly blown wide open as firstly Davies then Rea passed the former champ.
At the flag Rea recorded his 12th win of the year with Davies coming home second ahead after the pair swapped places three times on the final lap, twice at the final corner.
Biaggi claimed a historic 71st podium finish in third, the Italian extending his own record of being the oldest rider to ever stand on a WorldSBK podium.
Sylvain Guintoli claimed a season best 4th after his Pata Honda appeared to be kinder to its tires while poleman Sykes dropped to 5th after setting a blistering pace that saw him shatter the lap record in the early stages.
Alex Lowes was sixth aboard the Voltcom Crescent Suzuki ahead ofHaslam, Althea Racing pairing Matteo Baiocco and Niccolo Canepa, and Jordi Torres (Aprilia Racing Team) who dropped from what looked like a safe 4th to 10th in the final few laps.
David Salom (Team Pedercini), Randy de Puniet (Voltcom Crescent Suzuki), Leon Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse), Roman Ramos (Team Go Eleven) and Leandro Mercado (Barni Racing) completed the point scorers.
Michael van der Mark retired his Pata Honda after running inside the top ten.
2015 Sepang World Superbike Results, Race 2 Recap
Race 2 was won by Davies after a turn one incident saw Biaggi crash out of contention with Sykes and Lowes having to take avoiding action. While Biaggi retired Sykes and Lowes continued with the former champion crashing at Turn 9 with ten laps to go which ended his championship ambitions for 2015. Lowes eventually recovered to eigth.
Unlike the opening race of the day it was Davies that attempted to make the break with champion elect Rea giving chase. The British rider maintaining his pace until the end to secure his third victory in four races and with it move into second overall in the championship standing after he and Rea touched at the final corner.
Torres obviously worked hard during the day’s two races, the Spanish WorldSBK rookie able to lap consistently in the 2.06s bracket for the duration of race 2 to claim his second podium finish of the season.
Guintoli scored another 4th position, his best weekend of the season ahead of teammate Michael van der Mark who made up for his race one retirement with a fine fifth.
Leon Haslam was sixth on his Aprilia Racing – Red Devils machine, finishing a tenth behind the Dutchman.
David Salom (Team Pedercini), Alex Lowes, Matteo Baiocco (Althea Racing) and Roman Ramos (Team Go Eleven) were 7th to 10th respectively with Niccolo Canepa (Althea Racing), Leon Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse), Randy de Puniet (Voltcom Crescent Suzuki), Tom Sykes and Leandro Mercado (Barni Racing) completing the points finishers.
2015 Sepang World Superbike Results, race one:
1. Jonathan Rea, 33m33.964s GBR KAWASAKI Kawasaki Racing Team
2. Chaz Davies, +0.121s GBR DUCATI Aruba.it Racing-Ducati Superbike Team
3. Max Biaggi, +10.695s ITA APRILIA Aprilia Racing Team - Red Devils
4. Sylvain Guintoli, +15.433s FRA HONDA Pata Honda World Superbike Team
5. Tom Sykes, +17.983s GBR KAWASAKI Kawasaki Racing Team
6. Alex Lowes, +23.758s GBR SUZUKI Voltcom Crescent Suzuki
7. Leon Haslam, +24.854s GBR APRILIA Aprilia Racing Team - Red Devils
8. Matteo Baiocco, +28.306s ITA DUCATI Althea Racing
9. Niccolo Canepa, +31.098s ITA DUCATI Althea Racing
10. Jordi Torres, +34.105s ESP APRILIA Aprilia Racing Team - Red Devils
2015 Sepang World Superbike Results, race two:
1. Chaz Davies, 33m36.466s GBR DUCATI Aruba.it Racing-Ducati Superbike Team
2. Jonathan Rea, +0.091s GBR KAWASAKI Kawasaki Racing Team
3. Jordi Torres, +5.008s ESP APRILIA Aprilia Racing Team - Red Devils
4. Sylvain Guintoli, +13.130s FRA HONDA Pata Honda World Superbike Team
5. Michael van der Mark, +15.801s NED HONDA Pata Honda World Superbike Team
6. Leon Haslam, +15.970s GBR APRILIA Aprilia Racing Team - Red Devils
7. David Salom, +24.561s ESP KAWASAKI Team Pedercini
8. Alex Lowes, +26.526s GBR SUZUKI Voltcom Crescent Suzuki
9. Matteo Baiocco, +28.528s ITA DUCATI Althea Racing
10. Roman Ramos, +31.598s ESP KAWASAKI Team GO Eleven
2015 World Superbike Point Standings after 10 of 13 rounds:
1. Jonathan Rea, 452 pts GBR KAWASAKI Kawasaki Racing Team
2. Chaz Davies, 308 pts GBR DUCATI Aruba.it Racing-Ducati Superbike Team
3. Tom Sykes, 295 pts GBR KAWASAKI Kawasaki Racing Team
4. Leon Haslam, 259 pts GBR APRILIA Aprilia Racing Team - Red Devils
5. Jordi Torres, 186 pts ESP APRILIA Aprilia Racing Team - Red Devils
6. Sylvain Guintoli, 162 pts FRA HONDA Pata Honda World Superbike Team
7. Michael van der Mark, 125 pts NED HONDA Pata Honda World Superbike Team
8. Davide Guigliano, 119 pts ITA DUCATI Aruba.it Racing-Ducati Superbike Team
9. Alex Lowes, 112 pts GBR SUZUKI Voltcom Crescent Suzuki
10. Matteo Baiocco, 107 pts ITA DUCATI Althea Racing
2015 Sepang World Superbike results, Photo Gallery