2021 Donington World Superbike Race 2 Result: Bumps And Bruises

As the riders left their garages to setup on the grid, the rain came down, but it had stopped by the time the teams left the riders on the grid to race and everyone settled on the softest tyre as the track hit 35ºC. 

Jonathan Rea hit turn one first, but it was Toprak Razgatlioglu who got the best start, slotting into second place into turn one, with Tom Sykes, Garrett Gerloff, Leon Haslam and Michael van der Mark behind him. Halfway round the opening lap, Razgatlioglu tried to pass Rea, but his attempt at Coppice didn't work. On lap two, Razgatlioglu set the fastest lap as he followed Rea at the front. The leading pair had Tom Sykes with them who kept up with the leaders, claiming that he saw what Razgatlioglu did on Saturday and just copied his tyre choice. 

Tom Sykes said he regretted his tyre choice as the rear was sliding all over the place but he thanked extra Yorkshire puddings for his ability to sit further back on his BMW to increase the rear grip. 

Toprak Razgatlioglu set the fastest lap on laps two, three and four, and finally got the pass into coppice he'd been trying all race to work, taking the lead from Jonathan Rea. Over a second behind Tom Sykes, Garrett Gerloff passed Leon Haslam on the outside to take fourth position, with Michael van der Mark, Alex Lowes and Scott Redding on his tail. 

Lap five, Jonathan Rea set the fastest lap behind Toprak Razgatlioglu, looking for a way past into the Foggy Esses, but Razgatlioglu on the brakes is very tricky to pass. 

On a short, four kilometre track, without any long straights, and a top speed below 280kph, even less if you're not on a Ducati, the riders surprisingly spend a third of the lap on the brakes, and Brembo rates Donington as one of the hardest braking tracks of the year. When braking is one's strength, like it is with Razgatlioglu, it's not surprising one can perform well here. 

Rea kept in close to Razgatlioglu bit on lap six, he was a bit too close into the Esses at the end of the back straight, and he had to avoid the Yamaha's rear wheel, a mistake that only cost him a half second. It took Rea two more laps, one of which was the fastest lap of the race, to close on his championship rival, and two laps later, Razgatlioglu missed the first apex into Coppice and went wide enough to kiss the kerb, giving Rea the only invitation he needed to take the lead back. 

At half race distance, with Rea and Razgatlioglu almost three seconds clear of Garrett Gerloff and Tom Sykes, Gerloff finally catching and passing the Yorkshire pudding and tea-fuelled Tom Sykes, Jonathan Rea hit the ripple on the track between Mcleans and Coppice, lifting his rear off the track as his front suspension was unloading, putting too much pressure on his front tyre and sending him out of the lead of the race and the championship and into the gravel. He recovered in twentieth position, but gave Razgatlioglu a comfortable two and a half second margin in the lead. Rea picked up his Kawasaki and returned to the race, but he was in twentieth place, dead last, an insurmountable twenty five seconds off nineteenth place.

Toprak Razgatlioglu maintained his two to three second lead over Garrett Gerloff who eventually put a gap between himself and Tom Sykes, with Scott Redding closing on Sykes but unable to get close enough to even try to pass. On the last lap, into the Melbourne hairpin, he tried a lunge, but was too hot going in and he missed the fast line and left Sykes to get his first feature-length race podium in almost two years. 

Toprak Razgatlioglu took a decisive victory, with plenty of fuel left to grab, wave and discard a Turkish flag before returning to parc fermé, ahead of Garrett Gerloff, making it a Yamaha 1-2 and cementing Gerloff's place at the top of the independents, and sixth place in the championship. A jubilant Tom Sykes of old secured third place but hat to concede sixth place in the championship to Gerloff. Scott Redding's fourth place returned him to third place, three points ahead of Alex Lowes but sixty four points off Jonathan Rea in second place.

Toprak Razgatlioglu now leads the 2021 World Superbike championship by two points as Jonathan Rea records his first race of the season off the podium and out of the points. The rain was kind enough not to interfere in the racing.

Results:

Round Number: 
4
2021
Tweet Button: 

Back to top

Comments

We have been seeing several moments lately and now a rare mistake from Jonathan Rea due to the pressure being applied by the rivals, particularly  Toprak. It's very early in the championship and we all know Rea is the master of consistency and waging the championship war. Hopefully Toprak can continue to improve and keep the battle close the rest of the way.

This season looks like it could get interesting! And not before time. I don't much mind who lifts the trophy but would love to see it come down to the final race. I hadn't expected Toprak, on a Yamaha to boot, to be the prime challenger, thought it would Scott, but I fear that ship has now sailed southwards for this year. Meanwhile, Toprak is on fire.

Interesting weekend, thanks for the report Jared.

We live in crazy times. Jonathan Rea not leading the championship! Wow!

MM93 not winning everything! How can this be?

Toprak Razgatlioglu, Yamaha and Garrett Gerloff going fast, getting great reults.

Donington 2018 Toprak Razgatlioğlu grabbed his first podium in SBK. Three years later he is leading the championship. Factory contract with Yamaha for another two years. Toprak doesn't seem to be concerned about going to MotoGp or not. The young Turk isn't distracted by speculation in the media. He would be a good fit in the Petronas Yamaha MotoGp team, imho.

Good to see Tom Sykes on the podium again. I still don't get Yorkshire pudding? I've tried them, not a fan.

Assen again soon for SBK. Should be entertaining in 3 weeks time.

 

I'm from the Canadian prairies, and I agree about the pudding!

Outer-limits riding from Toprak in both main races and a cool head in the Superpole race - it appears Yamaha may finally have the perfect combination of rider and machine since Spies shocked the paddock in '09. The bumps at Coppice that Rea succumbed to look absolutely savage. Sykes podium interview had me in tears, hilarious stuff ;D