Tough First Raceday At Mandalika
Jonathan Rea finished the first 22-lap WorldSBK race at a hot and humid Mandalika circuit in Indonesia in ninth.
Rea had to start Race One from the third row of the grid, despite having qualified on row two, in fifth place, after he was adjudged to have impeded another rider’s progress during Superpole. Jonathan accepted the ruling without complaint, and ended up eighth on the first race grid as a result.
It was a tough race from the beginning, especially as Jonathan - alongside several members of the paddock - was suffering from some form of intestinal complaint.
Rea moved up to fifth place by lap five, and stayed there until lap ten. Losing front tyre grip, Rea could not use the greatest of his machine’s capabilities for the whole race and he slipped back to finish ninth.
The second and final Mandalika raceday on Sunday 5 March will feature the always exciting ten-lap Superpole Race and then a 22-lap Race Two.
Jonathan Rea, stated: “It was a difficult day. In Superpole I got lap cancelled because of a yellow flag and then a penalty for being in the way of Philipp Öttl. Big apology for that and no excuses really. In the race, I got involved in that melee in Turn One with Rinaldi, and lost some track positions. I got back to Andrea Locatelli and I thought that would be where I would race, with Locatelli and Toprak Razgatlioglu. Most of the sectors were OK, except for the fast succession of early right hand corners. I lost all my front confidence going through there. At angle, on the gas, the front was moving and sliding as I committed to T7. I had no front stability to turn there, then to change direction to get a good exit from T8. After that it was just a fight for positions. Not great for us today, but that was my race.”