Rea Takes Front Running Victory
Kawasaki Racing Team rider Jonathan Rea rode from pole position to victory in the first ever WorldSBK race at Circuit de Barcelona today.
On a weather-affected day Rea navigated his way through a wet FP3 session this morning, posting the fastest lap time. In Tissot-Superpole, held between FP3 and the first WorldSBK race itself, Rea claimed pole position for the fourth race in a row this year, and the 27th of his career.
The opening race itself was finally held in dry conditions and Rea’s leading pace allowed him to manage the gap to his rivals from the front, taking the chequered flag 2.625s ahead of his main championship rival Scott Redding (Ducati). On the way to the win he had set the fastest lap of the race, and as a consequence the new lap record of 1’42.797, on lap two of the 20.
Jonathan has now scored nine race wins in 2020 and dedicated this latest one to his grandfather, who passed away 27 years ago today and also to 2018 WorldSSP300 World Champion Ana Carrasco who is currently recuperating having been injured in a crash in testing last week.
With the first raceday completed there will be two more chances for the KRT riders to go for wins on Sunday – in the 10 lap Superpole sprint race and then a full distance-lap 20-lap finale, at an unusual starting time of 15.00, not the more usual 14.00.
Jonathan Rea, stated: “It was super-good to win here. I had a lot of motivation in this race. It is my team’s home race and Ana Carrasco could not be here in the WorldSSP300 class, so this win was for her - and also for my Grandfather, as it is the 27th anniversary of his death today. I was using this to give me power in the race, to never rest and never give up. I am super-happy for my team and me, because, literally, our workshops are located just behind the main grandstand. It is a happy day and I just wish the fans and families could be here to celebrate with us. We also have a lot of information for tomorrow, and I am looking forward to that one because in the last lap today the front was moving quite a lot. In this temperature at this grip level we just need a little bit more for tomorrow.”