Poor weather conditions prompt abandonment of racing in Italy.
Four-time reigning champion Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) has secured his first two victories of the season at Imola’s fifth round of the 2019 Motul FIM Superbike World Championship (WorldSBK), while poor weather conditions prompted the cancellation of race two.
Rea blitzed the opposition in vintage fashion during race one, taking his first win of the season to end the run of victories by Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati).
The Spaniard maintains a healthy championship lead with a second place finish, while in the battle for third, Toprak Razgatlioglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing) held on for his third WorldSBK podium. Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK) and Leon Haslam (Kawasaki Racing Team) completed the top five.
At the front of the Tissot Superpole Race, Rea took the win commandingly – his first of the newly-added race for 2019. Aruba.it Racing – Ducati duo Chaz Davies and Bautista came home behind him, while van der Mark took his best Imola result of fourth ahead of teammate Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK).
It was an action-packed WorldSSP race at Imola, which had drama, intrigue and battles scattered right the way through the 17-lap encounter. In a race that saw a group of five whittled down to the leading duo in the championship of Randy Krummenacher (BARDAHL Evan Bros. WorldSSP Team) and teammate Federico Caricasulo, it was an exciting race that went down to a vintage WorldSSP final lap.
The duo finished ahead of Raffaele De Rosa (MV AGUSTA Reparto Corse), followed by Hikari Okubo (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) and Ayrton Badovini (Team Pedercini Racing).
With the heavy rain failing to stop, conditions deteriorated and therefore Race Direction and the Safety Commission took the decision to cancel Sunday’s WorldSBK race two and WorldSSP300 race one to guarantee riders’ safety. The next stop on the WorldSBK calendar is scheduled for 7-9 June at Jerez in Spain.