WorldSBK Donington Park Race 1 Results | Rocketman Razgatlioglu wins from 13th

Toprak Razgatlioglu produces a stunning performance to go from 13th to 1st by lap two in dicey conditions as Jonathan Rea is forced to settle for second

Toprak Razgatlioglu - Pata Yamaha R1 2021

Toprak Razgatlioglu has taken a surprise yet masterful win in the opening WorldSBK Championship race of the weekend at Donington Park with a stunning ride to victory from 13th on the grid.

The Turkish rider qualified down on the fifth row of the grid after struggling to get the Yamaha R1 hooked up in a wet Superpole session, but in the damp-to-dry conditions of the race he was in scintillating form.

Indeed, though persistent rain early in the day ensured the encounter would be classified as a ‘wet race’, the breaking sun allowed enough dry patches for slick tyres to be used across the grid.

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Even so, with slippery conditions off-line, it still took a ginger approach through the opening turns for most riders, with the exception of Razgatlioglu, whose rocketship start had him up to fourth position coming into the opening turn.

Fourth became third and then second by the time the field had completed half a lap, Razgatlioglu producing the biking equivalent of an Ayrton Senna lap of Donington Park to find himself on the tail of pole man Jonathan Rea by the time the first lap was completed.

Immediately putting the pressure on his title rival, Razgatlioglu was through by Coopice, meaning he’d completed his 13th to 1st place charge midway round lap two. 

With the circuit drying quickly, Rea might have fancied the chance of fighting back but for a wobble at the top of Craner Curves that sent him on a frightening high-speed downhill trip on wet grass from which he’d survive to hold onto second place, where he’d stay.

Victory for Razgatlioglu is his second in a row and the seventh of his career, the manner of which bears a striking resemblance to his maiden wins at Magny-Cours in 2019 when he twice went from 16th to first place on the Puccetti Kawasaki. The result sees him reduce Rea’s championship lead down further to 15 points.

Behind Rea, the fight for third proved entertaining with Michael van der Mark holding station initially before fading back, with Tom Sykes, Alex Lowes and Garrett Gerloff all proceeding to occupy the position in the ensuing laps.

The fight appeared to be over when Gerloff powered into third place on the GRT Yamaha, only for the American to drop the R1 at Goddards. That promoted Lowes back into the spot, which he’d protect for his fourth podium of the year.

Sykes matched his and BMW’s best result of the season with fourth place, just ahead of his Dutch team-mate van der Mark, with Leon Haslam landing his first top six finish of the year in sixth.

Gerloff remounted to recover to seventh position, catching and passing Alvaro Bautista, who had to settle for eighth. Privateers Lucas Mahias and Axel Bassani completed the top ten, the latter surprisingly emerging as Ducati’s lead contender in what was a dismal race for the Borgo Panigale squad.

Indeed, hopes were for Scott Redding in the damp but the title contender crashed out on lap two at the top of Craner Curves.

Still contending with his shoulder injury, Chaz Davies soldiered on to 11th, ahead of Michael Ruben Rinaldi in 12th, while Eugene Laverty, local lad Luke Mossey and Isaac Vinales completed the points’ paying positions.

2021 WorldSBK Donington Park | RACE 1 RESULTS

2021 WorldSBK Donington Park | RACE 1 RESULTS | Round 4 / 13
PosRiderNat.WorldSBK TeamSuperbikeTiming
1Toprak RazgatliogluTURPata Yamaha by BRIXXYamaha YZF-R120 Laps
2Jonathan ReaGBRKawasaki Racing TeamKawasakI ZX-10RR+2.419
3Alex LowesGBRKawasaki Racing TeamKawasakI ZX-10RR+12.281
4Tom SykesGBRBMW Motorrad WorldSBKBMW M1000RR+14.825
5Michael van der MarkNEDBMW Motorrad WorldSBKBMW M1000RR+16.447
6Leon HaslamGBRTeam HRC HondaHonda CBR1000RR-R+17.028
7Garrett GerloffUSAGRT Yamaha WorldSBKYamaha YZF-R1+33.345
8Alvaro BautistaESPTeam HRC HondaHonda CBR1000RR-R+37.365
9Lucas MahiasFRAKawasaki Puccetti RacingKawasakI ZX-10RR+43.566
10Axel BassaniITAMotocorsa RacingDucati Panigale V4 R+43.636
11Chaz DaviesGBRTeam GoElevenDucati Panigale V4 R+48.102
12Michael Ruben RinaldiESPAruba Racing DucatiDucati Panigale V4 R+56.538
13Eugene LavertyIRLRC Squadra CorseBMW M1000RR+59.392
14Luke MosseyGBRTPR Team Pedercini RacingKawasakI ZX-10RR+1m >
15Isaac VinalesESPOrelac Racing VerdNatura KawasakI ZX-10RR+1m >
16Loris CressonBELTPR Team Pedercini RacingKawasakI ZX-10RR+1 Lap
DNFJonas FolgerGERBonovo MGM ActionBMW M1000RR 
DNFTito RabatESPBarni Racing TeamDucati Panigale V4 R 
DNFAndrea LocatelliITAPata Yamaha by BRIXXYamaha YZF-R1 
DNFChristophe PonssonFRAAlstare YamahaYamaha YZF-R1 
DNFScott ReddingGBRAruba Racing DucatiDucati Panigale V4 R 
DNSKohta NozaneJPNGRT Yamaha WorldSBKYamaha YZF-R1