Jonathan Rea has secured another easy World Superbike win in the penultimate race of the year to close in for the most points scored in a season, while Chaz Davies edges towards second place in the riders’ championship.
The triple World Superbike champion looked comfortable through having converted pole position into an early lead before measuring the pace at the front to win, Kawasaki’s first at the Losail International Circuit, to further cement his domination of 2017. Rea now needs to win the final race of the campaign to beat Colin Edwards’ most points record of 352 set in 2002.
Davies clinched second place for Aruba.it Racing Ducati to take a huge stride towards securing the runner-up spot in the championship having entered the race weekend level on points with Tom Sykes.
Sykes made positive progress off the line to slot into second place behind Rea before eventually fading down to sixth place but his position was somewhat boosted by three riders ahead of him falling out of contention when Alex Lowes and Michael van der Mark both crashed and Xavi Fores pulled up with a technical issue.
Marco Melandri grabbed another podium on his return to the World Superbike championship in third place, while Milwaukee Aprilia also profited with Eugene Laverty scoring his best result of the year in fourth place and Lorenzo Savadori equalling his best finish of the season in fifth place after the pair enjoyed a race-long tussle.
With Sykes down in sixth, he almost lost further places to Jordi Torres on the Althea BMW who finished the race just over a second off the factory Kawasaki rider.
Full World Superbike results from race one in Qatar:
1. Jonathan Rea GBR Kawasaki Racing ZX-10RR 17 laps
2. Chaz Davies GBR Aruba.it Racing Ducati Panigale R +4.944s
3. Marco Melandri ITA Aruba.it Racing Ducati Panigale R +10.405s
4. Eugene Laverty IRE Milwaukee Aprilia RSV4 +12.052s
5. Lorenzo Savadori ITA Milwaukee Aprilia RSV4 +12.339s
6. Tom Sykes GBR Kawasaki Racing ZX-10RR +15.587s
7. Jordi Torres ESP Althea BMW S1000RR +16.789s
8. Sylvain Guintoli FRA Puccetti Kawasaki ZX-10RR +17.869s
9. Leon Camier GBR MV Agusta RC F4 RR +18.494s
10. Roman Ramos ESP Team Go Eleven Kawasaki ZX-10RR +22.660s
11. Jeremy Guarnoni FRA Pedercini Kawasaki ZX-10RR +36.011s
12. Jake Gagne USA Red Bull Honda CBR1000RR SP2 +38.237s
13. Roberto Rolfo ITA Grillini Kawasaki ZX-10RR +49.659s
14. Ondrej Jezek CZE Grillini Kawasaki ZX-10RR +50.079s
Did not finish:
Alex Lowes GBR PATA Crescent Yamaha R1
Xavi Fores ESP Barni Ducati Panigale R
Raffaele De Rosa ITA Althea BMW S1000RR
Michael van der Mark NED PATA Yamaha YZF-R1
Davide Giugliano ITA Red Bull Honda CBR1000RR SP2
Alessandro Andreozzi ITA Guandalini Yamaha YZF-R1