ANOTHER CLASSIC ASSEN WIN FROM REA
KRT rider Jonathan Rea scored yet another famous race win at the Assen TT Circuit to take his 99th Kawasaki WorldSBK win and the 114th victory of his career. His 16th Assen race victory was one of Rea’s very best, as he held his racing line and his nerve in the final corners to beat Alvaro Bautista (Ducati) by just 0.103 seconds.
In the early laps of the race, pole-sitter, Toprak Razgatlioglu (Yamaha) was leading but Rea used all his considerable experience and determination to ease past his rival and take the lead. With nine laps to go championship leader Alvaro Bautista joined Rea and Razgatlioglu, having dropped Andrea Locatelli (Yamaha) from the podium battle.
Razgatlioglu re-passed Rea for the lead at half race distance. After that point Rea and Razgatlioglu traded the lead for a time, until Jonathan eased ahead again - just as Bautista had moved into second place.
As the final chicane approached Bautista closed in on Jonathan but was not able to pass him on the inside as Rea had set-up a defensive inside line with his Ninja ZX-10RR. It was a thrilling end to another exciting WorldSBK race in the 2022 season.
Rea has now extended his all-time record of Assen wins to 16, 11 of them on Kawasaki machinery.
In the overall points’ standings Rea retook his championship lead by two points from Bautista, with two more Assen WorldSBK races to go on Sunday 24 April.
Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team Rider): “The race was a difficult one because with Toprak in the front I felt much faster. When I went to the front I felt like I did not want to destroy my tyre, so I just conserved my pace. He wasn’t coming back at me again so I thought, ‘just keep the rhythm.’ Then I saw Alvaro come through and he was really close. I had not much in reserve but I knew in the last three laps I could maximise the bike and really push on. It was giving me really good feedback. There were just a couple of weak areas where I needed to be careful, defend a little bit and make no mistakes. In the stronger areas I was able to put in some power and take another Assen win.”