Barcelona next up for WorldSBK with thirty points between top Championship contenders
Despite the chaos that unfolded throughout the Pirelli French Round a fortnight ago, the top three fight for the championship remains a fierce battle between Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Ducati – Racing), Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamha with Brixx WorldSBK), and Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK), with Rea recently being demoted to third after his winless run continues.
Hometown hero, Alvaro Bautista remains the Championship leader with a 30-point advantage over Topral Razgatlioglu after a DNF in Race 2 in France, following what could be the clash of the season with Jonathan Rea.
Heading into the Catalunya Round, this will mark Bautista’s first race at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya with Aruba.it Ducati, although recently completing two tests here with the Ducati team.
Alvaro Bautista: “I’m looking forward to the race in Barcelona because it will be my home race. It’s a track that I like a lot and we will approach this weekend like we did before. We will try to work well from Friday to try have a good feeling with the bike. There is no expectation for us and on paper, it’s a good track for us – Magny-Cours was a bad track for me, and we were still competitive. The important thing will be to get the maximum in all situations and try not to make mistakes. After that, I will try to be competitive and try to do good races for the Spanish fans.”
Toprak Razgatlioglu capitalised off Rea’s Magny-Cours misfortunes, overtaking the Kawasaki rider for second in the Championship with a 17-point buffer. Razgatlioglu heads into this weekend hopeful after previous success in 2021, claiming second in the Tissot Superpole and Race 2, although he says Barcelona is not an easy track for Yamaha.
Toprak Razgatlioglu: “Barcelona is not an easy track for the Yamaha because we are not fast like the Ducati in the straight. I know that it won’t be an easy race for us this weekend, but we will try to fight for the best position possible and we will see.”
We’re certain that Jonathan Rea will be putting the Magny-Cours weekend behind him as he looks forward to the Catalunya round this weekend where he says he hopes to turn it all around.
Rea is on a winning drought of 12 races, his longest since 2012 to 2013. His 24th place finish in Race 1 and the incident in Race 2 means Rea only scored 18 points over the French Round, his worst scoring so far this season.
Jonathan Rea: “I’m looking forward to Barcelona race because we had a great test there a few weeks ago where I’ve felt comfortable on the bike, fast and consistent. Aside from winning the first ever race there, I haven’t had much success in Barcelona so I’m looking forward to turning that around. It’s my teams home race, so I’m also looking forward to seeing many friendly faces around the paddock, many team’s sponsors and local fans. After a difficult Magny-Cours, it’s important that we’re able to rebound in a good way and score some positive points.