WorldSBK Portimao Race 1 Results | Razgatlioglu escapes Bautista recovery

Toprak Razgatlioglu takes a bite out of Alvaro Bautista's 2022 WorldSBK Championship lead with his ninth win of the year in a truncated Race 1 at Portimao

Toprak Razgatlioglu - Pata Yamaha

Toprak Razgatlioglu has whittled Alvaro Bautista’s advantage at the head of the 2022 WorldSBK Championship standings down to 54 points with a determined sprint to victory in a much delayed and truncated first race at Portimao.

Getting underway 90mins later than scheduled following an incident in the preceding WorldSSP 300 race that necessitated an injured rider being airlifted to hospital, the ensuing wait for the medical helicopter to return to the Portuguese venue also meant a reduction in the race distance from 20 laps to 14.

It was a curtailment that might have worked in Razgatlioglu’s favour after breaking clear of a forming fight for second behind him involving title rivals Jonathan Rea and Bautista, who had begun to ramp up his momentum following an untidy first few laps.

It was Rea who initially looked to be the man to beat early on as he turned pole position into a hole shot before quickly getting into his rhythm. It left Razgatlioglu both in Rea's wake and in the clutches of Alex Lowes, who slipped into second at Turn 5.

The Kawasaki ZX-10RR one-two was shortlived though with Razgatlioglu reclaiming second place on lap two and it wasn't long before the Turkish rider was pulling back chunks of time on the Pata Yamaha with his lap record-breaking pace.

Back on the Kawasaki's tail by lap four, Razgatlioglu pounced for the lead at the start of lap six, his cause aided by Rea’s foolhardy attempts to stay on terms with his rival on the anchors having the effects of just sending the squirming ZX-10RR beyond the apex and wide on the exit.

Allowing Razgatlioglu immediate breathing room, though Rea initially rallied to catch up again by lap nine, the emergence of a new threat from behind in Bautista would occupy him long enough to let the defending champion breakaway into a comfortable margin at the front.

Taking full advantage of the squabbling behind, Razgatlioglu brought it home to the flag with a winning margin of 0.9s for his ninth victory in the last 14 races.

Razgatlioglu might have faced a bigger challenge from Bautista had the race run to the full 20 laps, the Spaniard completing an eventful day with a rewarding second place result that keeps his overall lead at a healthy 54 points.

Having received a pre-race boost by getting his fourth place on the grid reinstated - after successful overturning a yellow flag infringement ruling that for a time relegated him to ninth on the grid - Bautista wasn’t initially able to take full advantage, dropping to fifth place off the line before struggling for rhythm on the Ducati Panigale V4 R for a handful of laps.

Once in his stride though, Bautista began to make his presence known at the front, first dispatching Lowes for fourth on lap three before muscling his way through on a stubborn Axel Bassani for third on lap eight.

Coming up against Rea for second, the six-time WorldSBK Champion proved similarly steadfast in his defence, though Bautista didn’t help his own cause when - after streaming past the Kawasaki on the home straight with four laps to go - out-braked himself into Turn 1 to drop back into third.

Nonetheless, Bautista regrouped to get the same pass done successfully on the next revolution, but while his rapid late race pace might have clawed him back into the lead fight had there been eight laps still to go, he was forced to settle for second.

Rea had to make do with a lacklustre third place as his victory drought extends and his hopes of a seventh WorldSBK title fade away, the Ulsterman now 71 points adrift of his Ducati rival.

Another rider to benefit from his yellow flag appeal to jump from 14th to sixth on the grid, Axel Bassani made the most of the u-turn to once again demonstrate some frisky riding in the early stages by shuffling his way into third initially.

Buoyed by having a new Motocorsa Ducati deal for the 2023 WorldSBK season firmly in his back pocket, though Bassani would eventually cede a podium to Bautista, he’d robustly resist the attentions of Lowes late on to hold onto fourth, with the Briton rounding out the top five.

Andrea Locatelli landed sixth place after a race-long tussle with Scott Redding that was decided in favour of the former when the latter dropped his BMW at Turn 5 on the final lap.

His exit lifted Michael Ruben Rinaldi into seventh after an anonymous race, while top Honda rider Xavi Vierge, Loris Baz and Garrett Gerloff completed the top ten.

Elsewhere, Jake Gagne brought it home in 19th aboard Attack Performance Yamaha that took him to the 2022 MotoAmerica title, while Leon Haslam was one of two DNFs on the Pedercini Kawasaki

2022 WorldSBK Championship | Portimao, Portugal | Superpole RACE 1 RESULTS

2022 WorldSBK Championship | Portimao, Portugal | Superpole RACE 1 RESULTS | Round 9 / 12
PosRiderNat.WorldSBK TeamSuperbikeTiming
1Toprak RazgatliogluTURPata YamahaYamaha R114 Laps
2Alvaro BautistaESPAruba Racing DucatiDucati Panigale V4 R+0.657
3Jonathan ReaGBRKawasaki Racing TeamKawasaki ZX-10RR+3.032
4Axel BassaniITAMotocorsa RacingDucati Panigale V4 R+4.471
5Alex LowesGBRKawasaki Racing TeamKawasaki ZX-10RR+4.562
6Andrea LocatelliITAPata YamahaYamaha R1+8.805
7Michael Ruben RinaldiITAAruba Racing DucatiDucati Panigale V4 R+12.614
8Xavi ViergeESPTeam HRCHonda CBR1000RR-R+17.290
9Loris BazFRABonovo Action BMWBMW M 1000 RR+17.450
10Garrett GerloffUSAGRT Yamaha TeamYamaha R1+17.719
11Iker LecuonaESPTeam HRCHonda CBR1000RR-R+21.391
12Philipp OettlESPTeam GoElevenDucati Panigale V4 R+21.628
13Lucas MahiasFRAPuccetti RacingKawasaki ZX-10RR+22.972
14Michael van der MarkNEDBMW MotorradBMW M 1000 RR+25.808
15Eugene LavertyIRLBonovo Action BMWBMW M 1000 RR+29.879
16Roberto TamburiniITAMotoxracing TeamYamaha R1+30.268
17Luca BernardiSMRBarni Spark RacingDucati Panigale V4 R+30.919
18Scott ReddingGBRBMW MotorradBMW M 1000 RR+33.785
19Jake GagneUSAAttack Performance RacingYamaha R1+34.173
20Marvin FritzAUTiXS YARTYamaha R1+37.685
21Kohta NozaneJPNGRT Yamaha TeamYamaha R1]'+38.133
22Christophe PonssonFRAGil Motor SportYamaha R1+41.101
23Leandro MercadoARGMIE Racing TeamHonda CBR1000RR-R+47.660
24Oliver KonigCZEOrelac VerdNaturaKawasaki ZX-10RR+1m >
DNFLeon HaslamGBRTPR Pedercini RacingKawasaki ZX-10RR 
DNFHafizh SyahrinMALMIE Racing TeamHonda CBR1000RR-R