WorldSBK Race One: Rea Just Beats Teammate Sykes Over The Line In Tense Thai Clash
Reigning champion Jonathan Rea defeated 2013 champion Tom Sykes in an inter-team showdown at Thailand’s Chang International Circuit in Saturday’s race one of round two of the Superbike World Championship.
The defending champion recovered from some big on track moments earlier in the race to hunt down his teammate and eventually pass him with a few laps to go. Sykes kept the pace with Rea and had plenty in reserve for the final lap: the Yorkshireman closed in on his teammate with only corners to go and eventually crossed the line right behind him.
The Kawasaki Racing Team pair got the better start off the line from P2 and P3, and pole sitter Michael van der Mark initially dropped back before fighting his way back to Rea. After the Honda rider saved a big wobble, he was left to a lonely ride to third place. His teammate, 2006 MotoGP Champion Nicky Hayden, suffered a technical problem on lap 11 and was unfortunately forced to retire.
The Ducati duo of Chaz Davies and Davide Giugliano dueled with some incredibly close racing, before Giugliano lowsided out of the race when chasing down his teammate. Never having ridden in Buriram, Giugliano’s pace was close to that of teammate Davies. The Welshman was less fortunate in Thailand last season and will be encouraged by a P4 result and a good haul of points on a track traditionally not suited to the Panigale R.
Markus Reiterberger had a great rookie ride in Thailand to P5 and was joined in the top ten by Althea BMW teammate Jordi Torres in P8. The Yamaha pairing of Lowes and Guintoli both recovered from some trickier moments earlier in the race to bring the new YZF R1 home in P6 and P7 respectively, with the Aprilia RSV4 completing the top ten with WorldSBK rookies Alex De Angelis and Lorenzo Savadori finishing P9 and P10
WorldSBK Race 1 Results: 1. Jonathan Rea – Kawasaki 2. Tom Sykes- Kawasaki 3. Michael van der Mark – Honda
WorldSBK Race Two: Three Way Battle To Finish Line
Kawasaki’s Tom Sykes has taken his first scalp of the season with an incredible victory in a three-way fight for the finish line at Sunday’s race of round two of the 2016 Superbike World Championship at Chang International Circuit in Thailand.
The Yorkshireman was locked in a battle with team mate and reigning champion Jonathan Rea and Ducati’s Chaz Davies for most of the race, producing some of the most electrifying racing of the last few seasons.
The first drama of the Sunday race came when Honda rider Michael van der Mark and Chaz Davies made contact on the first lap as they tousled for position, before van der Mark led them off to chase the Kawasaki Racing Team pair of Sykes and Rea. Davies then pounced on the Dutchman, and was able to close the gap to Sykes and Rea.
Then commenced a stunning three-way battle to the line, with some incredibly close passes. Sykes took the victory, with Rea second after his race one win on Saturday, and Davies third showing a race time improvement of over 15 seconds on his Saturday effort.
Pole-sitter van der Mark crossed the line in fourth to see himself off the podium for the first time in 2016 despite pushing hard all race. A mechanical problem in race one, saw van der Mark’s Honda teammate Nicky Hayden retire, but the number 69 Honda crossed the line in race two in 5th to keep both the Fireblades in the top five.
Close Racing Characterised Race 2 At Chang
Sylvain Guintoli brought the new YZF R1 home in seventh for another good result on the Japanese manufacturer’s return to WorldSBK, ahead of the Althea BMW pair of Markus Reiterberger and Jordi Torres. Rookie Lorenzo Savadori on the Aprilia was ninth, with the top ten completed by Ducati rider Davide Giugliano.
Leon Camier recovered well from a tough start to bring MV Agusta points once again in 11th, ahead of Team GOELEVEN’s Roman Ramos, VFT’s Matteo Baiocco and IodaRacing’s Alex De Angelis on the second Aprilia machine, who scored more points for the Italian manufacturer despite a small run off in the closing stages. GP winner Karel Abraham completed the top 15 for Milwaukee BMW after outpacing teammate Brookes in Thailand.
Local riders Anucha Nakcharoensri (Yamaha Thailand Racing Team) and Sahustchai Kaewjaturaporn (Grillini) were both classified, with wildcard Nakcharoensri coming home in 18th.
After seeing his teammate Rea dominate much of the 2015 season, the first strike in the fight back for Tom Sykes has landed in Thailand in Race 2, with the next chance for the reigning Champion to take back the win coming at MotorLand Aragon, the scene of the Davies’ first Ducati win last season.
WorldSBK Race 2 Results: 1. Tom Sykes- Kawasaki 2. Jonathan Rea – Kawasaki 3. Chaz Davies- Ducati (Australia) 16. Josh Brookes – BMW
Championship Standings After Round Two
1. Jonathan Rea – 95 points (Kawasaki) 2. Tom Sykes – 66 points (Kawasaki) 3. Michael Van der Mark – 65 points (Honda)