2019 Imola World Superbike Superpole Race Results: Overnight Rain

The weather turned up to make the Superpole race evenness predictable. Ten laps under a grey sky made tyre choices interesting, with light and dark track areas visible and riders turning up on the grid with wet tyres and setups, swapping to try tyres and whatever setups they could fix on the grid. Leon Camier didn't line up after his crash yesterday and Tom Sykes didn't get to the grid with a warm-up lap, starting from the pit exit.

Chaz Davies led from pole position, ahead of Jonathan Rea, Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam. Michael van der Mark took fifth place from Alex Lowes and Toprak Razgatlioglu joined the top seven with a solid first lap. At the end of the lap, after Rea briefly borrowed first place from Davies for half a corner, Chaz Davies went into the last chicane and tested his brakes for the first time on his hybrid wet/dry setup and the front ploughed a little, making him miss the apex and slide the rear, letting Jonathan Rea through. On the exit to the chicane, Alvaro Bautista took second from him, but he recovered in third place and resumed his race on his teammate's tail. 

At the start of lap two, the leading seven riders broke away from the rest of the race and a lap later, the leading seven became the leading three and a four-way fight for fourth. Jonathan Rea set the fastest lap. A lap later, he set the fastest lap again. On lap four, Michael van der Mark took fourth place from Leon Haslam as Toprak Razgatlioglu took sixth off Alex Lowes. Jonathan Rea set the fastest lap again. 

Six laps in, with Jonathan Rea a second clear from the Ducatis in second and third, Chaz Davies was visibly quicker than Alvaro Bautista, with Bautista's choice of SCX tyre in the mixed conditions looking like the wrong choice. Bautista went wide before the last chicane and Davies didn't miss his chance, passing him easily. Jonathan Rea set the fastest lap again. 

A lap later, Toprak Razgatlioglu, also on the SCX tyre, started losing pace, freeing Michael van der Mark to consolidate his fourth place and giving Alex Lowes the opportunity to take fifth from him. Jonathan Rea set the fastest lap only to have it beaten a second later by Chaz Davies on a charge in second position. 

As Leon Haslam passed Toprak Razgatlioglu, the front three all had insurmountable gaps and settled into their finishing podium spots for the remaining laps. Jonathan Rea, after having to convince himself that the drops of rain on his visor weren't real, won ahead of Chaz Davies and Alvaro Bautista with fourth-placed Michael van der Mark almost four seconds clear of Alex Lowes and Leon Haslam. Six seconds behind, Toprak Razgatlioglu was caught by Tom Sykes and Jordi Torres, but in spite of a charge to the line, they couldn't pass him.

Jonathan Rea's ten-lap victory ahead of Chaz Davies closed the gap to Alvaro Bautista by five points to forty three and put him on pole position for race two later today.


Pos No. Rider Bike Gap
1 1 J. REA Kawasaki ZX-10RR  
2 7 C. DAVIES Ducati Panigale V4 R 2.141
3 19 A. BAUTISTA Ducati Panigale V4 R 6.864
4 60 M. VAN DER MARK Yamaha YZF R1 10.817
5 22 A. LOWES Yamaha YZF R1 14.212
6 91 L. HASLAM Kawasaki ZX-10RR 14.522
7 54 T. RAZGATLIOGLU Kawasaki ZX-10RR 20.484
8 66 T. SYKES BMW S1000 RR 20.764
9 81 J. TORRES Kawasaki ZX-10RR 20.957
10 28 M. REITERBERGER BMW S1000 RR 25.917
11 46 T. BRIDEWELL Ducati Panigale V4 R 26.820
12 87 L. ZANETTI Ducati Panigale V4 R 31.698
13 11 S. CORTESE Yamaha YZF R1 32.716
14 80 H. BARBERA Kawasaki ZX-10RR 34.097
15 21 M. RINALDI Ducati Panigale V4 R 36.049
16 23 R. KIYONARI Honda CBR1000RR 36.371
17 33 M. MELANDRI Yamaha YZF R1 40.673
18 52 A. DELBIANCO Honda CBR1000RR 42.406
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That would be Bautista, annointed w a knee down.
(Much preferred to the both knees priest position?)
Of course it would be Ducati. It doesn't seem to have been working very well for Iannone, who is a fan. But does for Vale at 40, of whom the Pope is a fan.