2019 Jerez World Superbike Results
Heading into round six of 13 in the 2019 World Superbike Championship, there were only two race winners: Alvaro Bautista and Jonathan Rea.
Not including the Superpole Races (sprint races), Aruba.it Racing Ducati’s Alvaro Bautista had won the opening eight consecutive races, and Rea one.
When free practice at Jerez was complete, Bautista topped the time sheets. But Rea did one better and beat Bautista in Superpole to claim the top qualifying session ahead of Saturday’s opening race.
Nobody could touch Bautista in race one. He led all 20 laps and became the first Spanish rider to win at Jerez in the 13 Superbike races held there. The Ducati V4R pilot finished 7.119 seconds ahead of Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team’s Michael van der Mark.
Third initially went to the Northern Irishman Rea, but he was penalized due to a questionable collision with van der Mark’s teammate Alex Lowes on the final lap. The collision sent Lowes to the ground, the YZF-R1 pilot losing his left glove in the wreck.
Because Rea was penalized, he lost the podium spot, which was given to GRT Yamaha WorldSBK’s Marco Melandri. Rea was credited with fourth.
“I’m really happy with this great win today,” says Alvaro Bautista. “This morning we made a few small changes to the Panigale V4 R which allowed me to improve the feeling. In the Superpole we did a very fast time and managed to get onto the front row, which was our aim.
“In these conditions, because of the high temperature, I used up a lot of energy and also had to manage the tire wear in the best way possible. On the opening lap, I took the lead of the race and made my own pace, which I was able to administer until the chequered flag.
“I’m very happy to win again after Imola, and I’m proud to be the first Spanish rider to win an SBK race here at Jerez, in front of all my family, friends and fans. I want to dedicate this win to my grandfather, who passed away a few days ago, for sure he gave me extra motivation for this victory.”
The drama continued in race two, but this time it involved Bautista, who experienced his first crash during a WorldSBK race. Bautista, who won the Superpole Race, crashed out at turn 1 of the second lap while in the lead. He rejoined after seven laps to secure some points, but due to a red flag on lap 19, Bautista didn’t achieve the minimum distance to garner any points.
Up front, it was a head-to-head race between Rea and van der Mark. The Dutchman was able to hold off Rea and take his first win of 2019 WorldSBK. Rea finished second, with Puccetti Racing Kawasaki’s Toprak Razgatlioglu earning third.
“What an amazing day! I was a bit upset with myself in the Sprint Race because I tried some optimistic overtakes that lost me a lot of time but in the end, I managed to finish second, which put me on the front row for Race 2,” says Michael van der Mark.
“I got a good start but then Johnny passed me quite quickly and I was happy to sit behind him and conserve my tires after Alvaro crashed out. But his pace wasn’t quite what I wanted to do and I could see the group behind were starting to catch us, so I decided to put in a pass and see if I could pull away, which I did. It’s been an incredible weekend and the bike has been great, with only very small changes required. I’m really happy with the progress made with the bike, so many thanks to the team and to Yamaha for all their hard work.”
After six of 13 rounds, Bautista holds the points lead with 300. Rea is closing in, and trails by 51 points. Van der Mark is now third in points with 188.
The series bow breaks for two weeks ahead of round seven at Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli” June 21-23.
2019 Jerez WorldSBK Race 1 Results
|2||Michael van der Mark||Yamaha||NLD||00’07.119|
|10||Michael Ruben Rinaldi||Ducati||ITA||00’31.218|
2019 Jerez WorldSBK Race 2 Results
|1||Michael van der Mark||Yamaha||NLD||31’23.720|
|4||Michael Ruben Rinaldi||Ducati||ITA||00’05.179|
|8||Jordi Torres||MV Agusta||ESP||00’01.401|
Following are the official race reports:
On the opening lap, it was a frantic start as Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) took the holeshot and kept his advantage, despite Bautista trying to get around the outside. However, on the short burst between Turn 4 and 5, the Spaniard was able to get ahead of Rea with a well-executed move. At the end of the first lap, Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team) was a solid third, whilst teammate Michael van der Mark had fought his way ahead of Marco Melandri (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK) and was fourth.
Soon, the battle over third began to take place, with Michael van der Mark right on the tail of Lowes as the third lap started. Half way round the lap however, it was an unconventional pass at Turn 8 that saw the Dutchman get ahead of his teammate and lead the pursuit to Jonathan Rea, who was losing time to Bautista ahead and the Yamahas behind – even though they were dueling.
It wasn’t long before the Yamahas began to rapidly close down the reigning four-time WorldSBK Champion. The Northern Irishman had no answer for a rampant van der Mark, who passed him with ease at Turn 6 with 12 laps to go. Soon, it was Alex Lowes’ turn to get ahead of Rea, this time at Turn 2 as Rea made a rare mistake. However, Lowes made a similar mistake at Turn 5, allowing Rea to go back ahead at Turn 6 before a battle throughout the rest of the race ensued.
There were further battles down the field, with Toprak Razgatlioglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing) making a blazing start to the race, up to fifth from 11th. Despite this, Marco Melandri was making his presence felt, with a strong block pass at Turn 6 in the middle of the race, whilst Razgatlioglu got the Italian back a lap later at Turn 1. The battle raged for the rest of the race, with Melandri taking his top five in the end since he was third in Race 1 at Phillip Island.
With van der Mark clearing off and Bautista on the horizon, Rea and Lowes were left to battle it out right the way until the end of the race. With multiple clean passes as the two swapped positions, the last lap was the perfect opportunity for a desperate move from Rea, who needs as many damage limitation points as possible. With Bautista winning and van der Mark second, there were shenanigans behind as Rea’s desperate pass knocked off Lowes. Rea’s wave of apology was no consolation as Alex Lowes’ left hand glove had been ripped off in the accident.
Marco Melandri took fourth ahead of Razgatlioglu, whilst Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) concluded the race in sixth. Chaz Davies (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) recovered to seventh with Sandro Cortese (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK), Leon Haslam (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) and Michael Ruben Rinaldi (BARNI Racing Team) completed the top ten.
Yuki Takahashi (Moriwaki Althea Honda Team) crashed at Turn 1 whilst Jordi Torres (Team Pedercini Racing) retired.
In what was a thrilling Race 2 at Jerez, an uncharacteristic error from Alvaro Bautista (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) at the start of Lap 2 saw the Spaniard suffer his first racing crash in WorldSBK. The battle for the win came alive as Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) and Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team) went head-to-head in the Spanish sun, resulting in the Dutchman taking his first win of 2019, whilst Razgatlioglu romped to third and yet another podium.
Into Turn 1 on the opening lap, Marco Melandri (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK) took the initial advantage, whilst a disaster for his fellow Yamaha rider Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team), who crashed at Turn 2 on the opening lap. Bautista took the lead at Turn 5 and Michael van der Mark followed him through as Melandri went wide. Jonathan Rea took the pair of Yamaha riders at Turn 6, in a bid to pursue Bautista at the front.
However, it was disaster for the Spaniard at the beginning of Lap 2 as he crashed out of the lead! The championship leader was on the floor at Turn 1, with his ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati tumbling through the gravel. Bautista remounted but retired soon after. The race was now on, as Jonathan Rea led van der Mark and Marco Melandri, ahead of Toprak Razgatlioglu and Chaz Davies (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) completing the top five.
With 15 laps to go, the top five were covered by a second but disaster struck again, this time at Turn 5, as Marco Melandri attempted an ambitious pass on Davies, resulting in both riders crashing out. Davies was clearly frustrated with his former teammate, as both of them lost the chance to achieve a good result with Bautista out. Three of the main protagonists had suffered terrible results – Jonathan Rea was now looking like he was going to walk away from Jerez with a strong haul of points.
Michael van der Mark wasn’t prepared to let Rea have it all his own way, as the Dutchman took the lead with 14 laps to go at Turn 6. Jonathan Rea initially stayed with the Yamaha of van der Mark but couldn’t keep with the relentless pace of the 26-year-old out front, as 10 laps later, he had pulled out a two second lead. Alvaro Bautista had re-joined and was circulating in 16th position, ready to pick up the pieces in case anyone else was to crash out.
Battles continued to develop down the field, as Michael Ruben Rinaldi (BARNI Racing Team), who rocketed through from 11th on the grid to be the top running Ducati in fourth position, ahead of a jostling Sandro Cortese (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK) and Leon Haslam (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK), with the Brit getting ahead of the German in the closing stages at Turn 1.
A crash for Ryuichi Kiyonari (Moriwaki Althea Honda Team) at the fast Turn 11 resulted in gravel being put all over the circuit and a red flag coming out with two laps to go. Kiyonari walked away from the crash, although his bike was not so fortunate, having barrel rolled.
Michael van der Mark was a winner once again completing a faultless weekend, right the way through from FP1 to Race 2. Second position and closing the gap down to Bautista in the championship to 41 points, Jonathan Rea was happy to be back on the podium. It was another stunning ride from Toprak Razgatlioglu to complete the race in third position. Rinaldi took a career-best fourth, whilst Leon Haslam fought hard to complete the top five.
Just behind the Brit, Sandro Cortese took his best WorldSBK result. Seventh position belonged to Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team), who had a relatively quiet Acerbis Spanish Round, whilst Jordi Torres (Team Pedercini Racing), Loris Baz (Ten Kate Racing – Yamaha) and a superb Tommy Bridewell (Team Goeleven) completed the top ten on a day where Independent teams took the majority of top ten placings.
Leandro Mercado (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) had a good comeback in 11th, ahead of Markus Reiterberger (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team), Yuki Takahashi (Moriwaki Althea Honda Team) and Alex Lowes in 14th place being the last of the point-scorers.