Round One – Phillip Island
Sunday Superpole Sprint Race
Jonathan Rea got the holeshot ahead of Alex Lowes and Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam. Tom Sykes had started strongly in sixth but ran wide late on the opening lap and lost a number of positions.
Bautista made short work of Lowes and then immediately started to make parrys and thrusts at race leader Jonathan Rea. It took him another lap to make a move stick but once through he dropped the hammer.
This time around though Rea had the confidence to also bang his gavel and the pair started trading places at the front of the field.
Bautista and Rea swapped positions numerous times per lap as the race continued as Leon Haslam tried to close the gap and join the party up front.
Haslam though did not have the pace as the race wore on to stick with that leading duo.
Up front it was Bautista that had the pace, and enough pace to pull away from Rea over the final two laps and go on to make it two-from-two. Will he make it three-from-three in the next full distance 22-lap race later this afternoon…?
Only half-points are awarded for this new shorter middle race that has been added to all rounds of the Superbike World Championship for season 2019.
In that Sprint race riders broke the existing race lap record 17 times during that bout. Bautista went under it six times, as did Rea while Leon Haslam actually dipped under the previous race lap record five times during the ten-lap race.
|WSBK Superpole Race (10 laps)|
- Alvaro Bautista – Ducati
- Jonathan Rea – Kawasaki +1.176
- Leon Haslam – Kawasaki +5.072
- Alex Lowes – Yamaha +6.713
- Michael Van der Mark – Yamaha +6.800
- Marco Melandri – Yamaha +7.904
- Sandro Cortese – Yamaha +8.224
- Michael Rinaldi – Ducati +10.944
- Eugene Laverty – Ducati +12.416
- Chaz Davies – Ducati +14.068
- Tom Sykes – BMW +14.710
- Markus Reiterberger +16.994
- Leon Camier – Honda +20.012
- Ryuichi Kiyonari – Honda +24.013
- Topraz Razgatlioglu – Kawasaki +36.581
- Troy Herfoss – Honda +48.731
- Jordi Torres – Kawasaki +58.942
|WSBK Championship Points|
- Alvaro Bautista 37
- Jonathan Rea 29
- Marco Melandri 20
- Alex Lowes 19
- Michael Van der Mark 16
- Sandro Cortese 11
- Toprak Razgatlioglu 10
- Tom Sykes 9
- Michael Rinaldi 9
- Leon Haslam 8