WSBK

Rea masters conditions for Assen double

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KRT rider Jonathan Rea took another incredible win in the Netherlands in Race 2 of the fourth round of the Superbike World Championship as a half wet half dry race saw tyre decisions play the key role.

Joined on the podium by teammate Tom Sykes and local hero Michael van der Mark, Race 2 was characterized by nervous glances at the sky as the riders dealt their cards.

Sunday morning initially brought better weather to the TT Circuit Assen, with the sun breaking through the clouds to give the Dutch track a crisp, clear morning. With a lower breeze after the wind caused issues on Saturday, the race looked set to be in dry conditions, before a deluge interrupted World Supersport and saw a Wet Race declared for WorldSBK.

With Sylvain Guintoli one of two riders to choose intermediate tyres the Frenchman quickly went plummeting back through the order off the line, the two Kawasaki's of Sykes and Rea took to the lead, with Chaz Davies‰Ûª Ducati and Michael van der Mark and Nicky Hayden‰Ûªs Honda's in hot pursuit. As the conditions caused quick position changes, it was Milwaukee BMW rider Josh Brookes who emerged in the lead, with the damp conditions suiting the reigning BSB Champion.

Saturday podium finisher Nicky Hayden, reigning Champion Jonathan Rea and local hero Michael van der Mark were the challengers, before Rea and Sykes were the first of the front runners to dive into the pits for dry tyres as track conditions improved, followed by Van der Mark on the next lap.

As the pack started to shuffle after the tyre changes, Pedercini rider Lucas Mahias found himself at the head of the race, with KRT pairing Rea and Sykes hunting him down, followed by van der Mark. As dry tyres became necessary, reigning Champion Rea took control of the race once again to take another win in WorldSBK and increase his Championship lead. Teammate Tom Sykes made a well-timed tyre change to come home in second and recover some earlier lost ground, and Dutch rider Michael van der Mark remembered Saturday‰Ûªs standing ovation after a crash and kept the Honda on the track to take another home podium, keeping his WorldSBK rostrum record at 75% at his home circuit.

‰ÛÏOur target this weekend was to increase our championship lead and we did that," Rea said.

"I said to Pere my crew chief before the start of the race that the track should dry out pretty fast. We have had previous experiences like that. I have no idea why I go so well at Assen. It is nothing to do with the track itself. We got a double victory but it was not like Australia where I had more pace than the rest.

"We controlled the situations this weekend when we had to, we were calm and clever when we had to be, and as a team our strength shone through to get two strong results. We got the maximum from what we could achieve here so I am super, super, happy with that. Our stars aligned this weekend and it worked out, so I am just happy," Rea concluded.

Jonathan Rea on the way to completing the double in Assen
2015 STK1000 winner Lorenzo Savadori was another superstar decision maker as the IodaRacing rider took his Aprilia to P4 and his best ever result, followed home by Ducati‰Ûªs Chaz Davies, who was the lead bike for the Borgo Panigale factory once again. Honda rider Nicky Hayden, who had been challenging for the lead in the dry, came home sixth after waiting a little too long to change to slicks, mindful of the grey skies ahead.

Alex Lowes made up ground once again to end the race in P7 on his Pata Yamaha, in front of Davide Giugliano on the second Aruba.it Ducati. Leon Camier, after giving MV Agusta their best result of P4 in Race 1, again brought home a good haul of points in P9.

Xavi For̩s crossed the line to complete the top ten after an impressive showing at the start of the race, in front of front row starter Guintoli on the second Pata Yamaha YZF R1, with the points scorers completed by Roman Ramos, Lucas Mahias and the BMWs of Karel Abraham and Jordi Torres.

Josh Brookes, after leading and impressing in the difficult conditions, sadly crashed out and was unable to complete the race on his Milwaukee BMW, but will be encouraged by his incredible early pace.

WorldSBK is back on track at the mythical Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola at the end of April, for the cards to be dealt and played once again.

Main Photo: Tom Sykes (L), Jonathan Rea (C) and Michael van der Mark

WSBK Race 2 Results - Sunday - Assen:
1. Jonathan Rea GBR Kawasaki Racing ZX-10R 21 laps
2. Tom Sykes GBR Kawasaki Racing ZX-10R +2.442s
3. Michael van der Mark NED Honda Racing CBR1000RR +15.189s
4. Lorenzo Savadori ITA IodaRacing Aprilia RSV4 +25.507s
5. Chaz Davies GBR Aruba.it Racing Ducati 1199R +30.853s
6. Nicky Hayden USA Honda Racing CBR1000RR +36.458s
7. Alex Lowes GBR PATA Crescent Yamaha R1 +39.263s
8. Davide Giugliano ITA Aruba.it Racing Ducati 1199R +46.789s
9. Leon Camier GBR MV Agusta RC F4 RR +65.023s
10. Xavi Fores ESP Barni Ducati 1199R +65.468s
11. Sylvain Guintoli FRA PATA Crescent Yamaha R1 +84.948s
12. Roman Ramos ESP GO Eleven Kawasaki ZX-10R +95.035s
13. Lucas Mahias FRA Pedercini Kawasaki ZX-10R +1 lap
14. Karel Abraham CZE Milwaukee BMW S1000RR +1 lap
15. Jordi Torres ESP Althea BMW S1000RR +1 lap
16. Markus Reiterberger GER Althea BMW S1000RR +1 lap
17. Matthieu Lussiana FRA Team ASPI BMW S1000RR +1 lap
18. Pawel Szkopek POL Team Toth Yamaha R1 +1 lap
19. Peter Sebesteyen HUN Team Toth Yamaha R1 +2 laps
20. Dominic Schmitter SUI Grillini Kawasaki ZX-10R +2 laps
DNF. Josh Brookes AUS Milwaukee BMW S1000RR 13 laps completed
DNF. Matteo Baiocco ITA VFT Ducati 1199R 11 laps completed

WSBK Race 1 Results - Saturday- Assen:
1. Jonathan Rea GBR Kawasaki Racing ZX-10R 21 laps
2. Chaz Davies GBR Aruba.it Racing Ducati 1199R +36.662s
3. Nicky Hayden USA Honda Racing CBR1000RR +37.365s
4. Leon Camier GBR MV Agusta RC F4 RR +38.542s
5. Jordi Torres ESP Althea BMW S1000RR +37.922s
6. Lorenzo Savadori ITA IodaRacing Aprilia RSV4 +37.460s
7. Markus Reiterberger GER Althea BMW S1000RR +37.909s
8. Alex Lowes GBR PATA Crescent Yamaha R1 +38.893s
9. Roman Ramos ESP GO Eleven Kawasaki ZX-10R +41.910s
10. Lucas Mahias FRA Pedercini Kawasaki ZX-10R +39.323s
11. Josh Brookes AUS Milwaukee BMW S1000RR +38.638s
12. Alex de Angelis RSM IodaRacing Aprilia RSV4 +39.322s
13. Xavi Fores ESP Barni Ducati 1199R +37.741s
14. Matteo Baiocco ITA VFT Ducati 1199R +39.792s
15. Matthieu Lussiana FRA Team ASPI BMW S1000RR +41.485s
16. Josh Hook AUS Grillini Kawasaki ZX-10R +1 lap
17. Pawel Szkopek POL Team Toth Yamaha R1 +1 lap
DNF. Michael van der Mark NED Honda Racing CBR1000RR 19 laps completed
DNF. Karel Abraham CZE Milwaukee BMW S1000RR 13 laps completed
DNF. Davide Giugliano ITA Aruba.it Racing Ducati 1199R 12 laps completed
DNF. Tom Sykes GBR Kawasaki Racing ZX-10R 9 laps completed
DNF. Sylvain Guintoli FRA PATA Crescent Yamaha R1 5 laps completed

WSBK Championship Standings:
1. J. REA KAWASAKI 181 Points
2. C. DAVIES DUCATI 136 Points
3. T. SYKES KAWASAKI 122 Points
4. M. VAN DER MARK HONDA 90 Points
5. N. HAYDEN HONDA 67 Points
6. J. TORRES BMW 65 Points
7. D. GIUGLIANO DUCATI 64 Points
8. S. GUINTOLI YAMAHA 58 Points
9. L. SAVADORI APRILIA 51 Points
10. A. LOWES YAMAHA 44 Points
11. M. REITERBERGER BMW 40 Points
12. L. CAMIER MV AGUSTA 39 Points
13. X. FORÌäS DUCATI 37 Points
14. R. RAMOS KAWASAKI 36 Points
15. A. DE ANGELIS APRILIA 29 Points
16. J. BROOKES BMW 25 Points
17. K. ABRAHAM BMW 14 Points
18. L. MAHIAS KAWASAKI 9 Points
19. M. BAIOCCO DUCATI 8 Points
20. M. JONES DUCATI 2 Points
21. S. BARRIER KAWASAKI 2 Points
22. M. LUSSIANA BMW 1 Points

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