WorldSBK Barcelona SP Results | Rea roughs up Razgatlioglu in dramatic sprint

Jonathan Rea gets one over on Toprak Razgatlioglu in a dramatic, crash-strewn five lap WorldSBK Superpole Race sprint race in Barcelona

Jonathan Rea - Kawasaki Racing

Jonathan Rea has extended his advantage at the head of the 2021 WorldSBK Championship standings with a satisfying - if boisterous - victory over Toprak Razgatlioglu in a dramatic, crash-strewn five-lap Superpole Race.

A thrilling dash to the chequered across little more than seven minutes, the shortened distance - the result of a brief red flag period - brought out a more aggressive dynamic in Rea and Razgatlioglu’s simmering title feud with more than one physical moment on the opening lap.

Indeed, the race was already shaping up to be a classic at its original ten lap length as the championship contenders sized one another up during the first three lap phase, though Razgatlioglu - eager to make amends from his technical retirement in Race 1 while leading - was leading at the time of the stoppage, prompted by a coming together between Chaz Davies and Lucas Mahias.

At the restart, Rea and Razgatlioglu knocked elbows on the run down to turn one as they fought to keep their bucking bikes on the Tarmac, briefly enabling Michael Ruben Rinaldi to scythe through the middle of them, only to be hung out to dry by both riders as they struck past at Turn 2.

With Rea ducking under Razgatlioglu at Turn 3, the Turk attempted to respond inside at Turn 4, leading to a thrilling exchange of side-by-side action through Turn 5 and into Turn 6, before their inch-perfect formation broke with minor contact that forced the Yamaha man onto the kerbs and behind the fast-starting Alvaro Bautista.

Needing a few corners to get back past the Honda man, by the time Razgatlioglu recovered second place he was 1.5secs down on Rea with only four laps to bridge the gap. As such, though he was on the Kawasaki’s tail by the flag, it was Rea that would secure the win, in so doing nudging his lead up to nine points.

In third, Bautista earned Honda only its second podium with the new CBR1000RR-R with an inspired performance. The ex-MotoGP rider originally started in 16th place but after rising to seventh on the grid after a charge in the first three lap phase, took full advantage of his lofty starting spot to repel Alex Lowes for an unexpected rostrum.

Behind Lowes, Rinaldi recovered to fifth place having been dropped to tenth following the Turn 1 skirmish, the Italian making the most of a bruising accident at Turn 10 that eliminated Yamaha pair Andrea Locatelli and Kohta Nozane. Prompted when Locatelli clipped the back of Lowes as the Kawasaki closed the line on the exit of Turn 10, the subsequent collision with Nozane also forced race one winner Scott Redding off track in avoidance, all but ending his hopes of staying in the title fight.

Their misfortune allowed some of the lesser fancied names up the order, with Axel Bassani consolidating his brilliant podium in race one with a run to sixth place, from Leon Haslam and Garrett Gerloff, while Gil Yamaha’s Christophe Ponsson earned his maiden top ten finish in WorldSBK - and a spot on row three for Race 2 - in ninth.

That spelled bad luck for Tati Mercado, who looked set for the position on the MIE Honda up until the final lap, though tenth represents his and the team’s best finish of the year.

Similarly, it was a best of the year for Samuele Cavalieri in 11th - despite receiving no points - ahead of Isaac Vinales, Jonas Folger, Loris Cresson and the recovering Redding.

Elsewhere, BMW endured a torrid race after Michael van der Mark lost the front of his M 1000 RR at Turn 6 on the opening lap of the first start, taking down team-mate Tom Sykes.

Davies, meanwhile, has been taken to the medical centre following his altercation with Mahias at Turn 11.

2021 WorldSBK Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya | Superpole Race RESULTS

2021 WorldSBK Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya | Superpole Race RESULTS | Round 9 / 13
PosRiderNat.WorldSBK TeamSuperbikeTiming
1Jonathan ReaGBRKawasaki Racing TeamKawasakI ZX-10RR5 Laps
2Toprak RazgatliogluTURPata Yamaha by BRIXXYamaha YZF-R1+0.211
3Alvaro BautistaESPTeam HRC HondaHonda CBR1000RR-R+2.948
4Alex LowesGBRKawasaki Racing TeamKawasakI ZX-10RR+3.428
5Michael Ruben RinaldiESPAruba Racing DucatiDucati Panigale V4 R+5.431
6Axel BassaniITAMotocorsa RacingDucati Panigale V4 R+5.729
7Leon HaslamGBRTeam HRC HondaHonda CBR1000RR-R+5.814
8Garrett GerloffUSAGRT Yamaha WorldSBKYamaha YZF-R1+9.514
9Christophe PonssonFRAGil MotorsportYamaha YZF-R1+9.818
10Leandro MercadoESPMIE RacingHonda CBR1000RR-R+10.767
11Samuele CavalieriESPBarni Racing TeamDucati Panigale V4 R+12.713
12Isaac VinalesESPOrelac VerdNatura RacingKawasakI ZX-10RR+13.005
13Jonas FolgerGERBonovo MGM ActionBMW M1000RR+12.713
14Loris CressonBELTPR Team Pedercini RacingKawasakI ZX-10RR+13.005
15Scott ReddingGBRAruba Racing DucatiDucati Panigale V4 R+14.513
16Lucas MahiasFRAPuccetti KawasakiKawasakI ZX-10RR+19.893
17Lachlan EpisAUSTPR Team Pedercini RacingKawasakI ZX-10RR+28.775
DNFKohta NozaneJPNGRT Yamaha WorldSBKYamaha YZF-R1 
DNFAndrea LocatelliITAPata Yamaha by BRIXXYamaha YZF-R1 
DNFChaz DaviesGBRTeam GoElevenDucati Panigale V4 R 
DNFTom SykesGBRBMW Motorrad WorldSBKBMW M1000RR 
DNFMichael van der MarkNEDBMW Motorrad WorldSBKBMW M1000RR