2019 Buriram World Superbike Race One Result: Bye Bye Lap Record

Twenty laps in tropical heat, World Superbike was contested by nineteen riders. Qualifying was dominated by Alvaro Bautista with reigning world champion Jonathan Rea a consistent second place. 

Jonathan Rea led in the charge to the first turn, but Alvaro Bautista took the lead into turn one, only for Rea to lead out of the exit. Leon Haslam held third place until Alex Lowes took it from him at turn four, with Tom Sykes and Michael van der Mark pushing Haslam further back to sixth place. 

On the second lap, Bautista closed up to Rea at the end of the long kinked straight, bit Rea held Bautista off on the brakes. Jonathan Rea and Alvaro Bautista both broke the lap record on lap two. Lap three, Bautista and Rea charged towards turn three side by side, and Bautista lunged for the apes a little hot, leaving a gap for Rea to take the lead back, mid corner. Bautista, on the outside, cut in to the corner exit only to find a green bike in the way, slightly ahead of him. Bautista's Ducati bounced off Rea's Kawasaki and he had to settle his bike to avoid crashing. Alex Lowes in third place saw the gap and took second place from him. 

At the end of the lap, Bautista took second place from Lowes, holding the advantage but sitting a second behind the leader Rea. Lap four, Rea set the lap record and held off the fast Ducati on the straights for several laps. As Rea held his gap from Bautista, but the leading two were visibly quicker than everyone else on the track, with the fight for third place, headed by Alex Lowes and his Yamaha teammate Michael van der Mark, over two seconds back. As Bautista reeled Rea in on the fast bits, he finally caught up to him and on lap nine, they were both over four seconds clear of everything happening behind them. 

With Bautista finally getting his hooks into Rea, he was able to pass him at turn two, the kink in the bent straight that leads to turn three. Rea couldn't pass him back into turn three and Bautista held the advantage and broke the lap record in the process. 

While Jonathan Rea was able to keep Alvaro Bautista honest for a couple more laps, on lap eleven, the Spanish rookie broke for from his clutches and, with a few wobbles and slides, set about ticking the laps off. Rea closed up a few times, pushing Bautista to make a couple of tiny mistakes, but five laps from the end, maintained an unbeatable pace. Jonathan Rea was half a second quicker than the four riders fighting for third eight seconds back, Alex Lowes still leading Michael van der Mark, Marco Melandri and Leon Haslam, but Alvaro Bautista was a full second quicker than Lowes et al. 

The race then took the predictable turn of Bautista and Rea charging away at the front, a handful of seconds apart, leaving everyone else to sort out the rest of the places. Alex Lowes, having seen "plus zero for seventeen laps" on his pitboard, maintained his concentration to take third place behind Bautista and Rea, but it was Alvaro Bautista who once again won the race. 

Eugene Laverty crashed out on lap three, Ryuichi Kiyonari retured on lap eight and Chaz Davies crashed a lap later, but Davies was able to remount his bike and finish with a solitary point for fifteenth place. 

With the new Superpole race on Sunday now counting for the record books, Alvaro Bautista has won four races from four starts and leads the championship by 18 points, with Jonathan Rea second and Alex Lowes a further twenty three points behind him. Michael van der Mark, Marco Melandri and Leon Haslam round out the top six with second-best rookie Sandro Cortese in seventh place. 


Pos No. Rider Bike Gap
1 19 A. BAUTISTA Ducati Panigale V4 R  
2 1 J. REA Kawasaki ZX-10RR 8.217
3 22 A. LOWES Yamaha YZF R1 14.155
4 60 M. VAN DER MARK Yamaha YZF R1 14.623
5 91 L. HASLAM Kawasaki ZX-10RR 18.554
6 33 M. MELANDRI Yamaha YZF R1 18.681
7 11 S. CORTESE Yamaha YZF R1 25.603
8 21 M. RINALDI Ducati Panigale V4 R 27.627
9 66 T. SYKES BMW S1000 RR 28.789
10 54 T. RAZGATLIOGLU Kawasaki ZX-10RR 32.153
11 81 J. TORRES Kawasaki ZX-10RR 33.033
12 36 L. MERCADO Kawasaki ZX-10RR 33.254
13 2 L. CAMIER Honda CBR1000RR 34.232
14 28 M. REITERBERGER BMW S1000 RR 43.041
15 7 C. DAVIES Ducati Panigale V4 R 54.495
16 99 T. WAROKORN Kawasaki ZX-10RR 1'15.758
17 52 A. DELBIANCO Honda CBR1000RR 1'25.108
RET 23 R. KIYONARI Honda CBR1000RR 12 Laps
RET 50 E. LAVERTY Ducati Panigale V4 R 18 Laps
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Happy to see Bautista scoring this much point in just 3 race oh his debut in sbk.  I hope this lead will continue to the end of the year, he deserve it.after a long hard time in motogp.

It could be a dire season coming up if you are not a Bautista/Ducati fan.

Rea had many good things happen, he won the start, led early, fought with Bautista, forcing him into an error that pushed him back to third, led by just over a second, saw Bautista make mistakes and still ended up well beaten.

The rest of the field were no where close. despite the Yamaha improvements.

Given that the Ducati is a new bike with room for improvement, the outlook for close racing at the front is not good, unless Davies can get his act together, stay on the track and be competitive.

You mean to say that it will be just like the last couple seasons if you liked the Rea/Kaw combination.

I really don't see any difference if it does turn out that way...


I was hoping for improvment in the closeness of the racing at the front, not just a different consistent winner.

Considering that 1) Bautista's main advantage was in the long straight (Rea was fast and precise in/out of the sharp corners, at least in the 1st half of the race) and 2) this is another track that Bautista has motogp experience at (but he'll see fewer of those 2nd half of season), it could well be advantage Rea again as the season progresses. Hopefully it's more close racing rather than swapping dominance by track, but the bikes + riding styles look so different at this point close races seem unlikely.

Good job by Lowes staying in front of his Yamaha compatriots, that required a lot of composure. Cortese was well off that group but I think he's still doing pretty well for having just moved up to this level - he's really come on after having left moto2.

Further down, Sykes is riding the wheels off a slow bike, but Camier and/or Honda -- they just look lost.

Chaz Davies is a very good rider, fought for the championship last year ...and Bautista is just stomping him. I’d love to hear an explanation of what is going on. 

Anyone who has done well in MotoGP for this long and can get on a good bike in MotoGP for a single weekend and ride it to 4th is extremely talented but I did not expect this. 

... had a fascinating start. The shakeup is what most fans were asking for - and to take nothing away from Bautista - The Ducati is looking a bit MotoGP vs WSBK under acceleration & top end power.