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1 Lokakuu 2023

Rea Recovers Points After Dramatic Day

Kawasaki Racing Team riders Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes had some tough experiences on the final race day of the Portimao WorldSBK weekend. Lowes fell in the Superpole Race and was ruled out of Race Two, while Rea no-scored in the ‘sprint’ race and then finished tenth in Race Two.

The first race on Sunday 1 October, the ten-lap Tissot-Superpole Race, was short-lived for both Jonathan and Alex as each crashed on the opening lap, within a fraction of a second of each other, at the apex of Turn Five - the sharp downhill left-handed hairpin.

Lowes was ruled out of the final race after suffering a contusion on his recently operated left knee, but Rea lined up for the second race in tenth place after his Superpole Race no-score.

On lap one of Race Two Jonathan was forced to lift his bike under braking entering Turn Three and made contact with another rider, forcing him and another rider off track. The stewards adjudged Rea’s actions worthy of a long lap penalty which he served as soon as he could, on Lap 7.

He regained the track in 16th place after long lap, having been 14th before his penalty. Jonathan got up to 15th by lap ten and he ended the 20-lap race in tenth place, securing six more championship points.

Rea remains third in the overall championship standings and Lowes is ninth.

One round and three individual races remain to be contested at the final round of the season, which will be held at the Circuito de Jerez in Spain, between 27-29 October.

Jonathan Rea, stated: “A day to forget. Two big mistakes, the first one of them being in the Superpole Race. I was committed to a pass on Andrea and was just closing in. To not put him at risk I entered a bit faster on the inside to go clear of him but just touched the kerb and that was the end of my race. It had a huge knock on effect for Race Two as I was then starting from P10. I arrived in T3 alongside Bassani. I got a little bit squeezed and just ran out of track position a little bit too fast. I was on the front and rear brakes, trying to slow down but I hit Xavi Vierge. I saw him straight after the race and tried to apologise because I am so sorry for that. And for Scott Redding as well, as he was involved in the mix up. I took my long lap and tried to focus on my lap time. I had lost my rear brake lever. Without my rear brake in my hand I struggled to enter the corners in the same way as usual, so the pace was a bit slower and only enough to come back to P10. A day to forget, really.”

Alex Lowes, stated: “A disappointing day, obviously. My start was not that bad in the Superpole Race, and it is always good to be starting near the front. It was a little bit better than Jonathan’s but then he came past in T1. I was trying not to be too aggressive, but at the start of those Superpole races if you do not attack you get attacked. So I was just on the back of Jonny; had a little look in T3, and as we went into T4 I had a really good run but I stayed to the right of him. I could see that he made to go past Locatelli. I cut to the apex rather than stay on the outside and maybe get caught in this issue, so I cut into the inside. But I couldn’t see, I got blindsided and hit the inside of the corner. It is a shame because I think I would have had a good chance. Even when the team repaired the bike when I went back out, my pace was for the top five. I went sprinting towards my bike, full of adrenaline, but we know that it is not too long since I had knee surgery. When I went out again I was not 100%. So I will go home, reset and try to finish the year strongly in Jerez.”

Tito Rabat (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) was 18th and then 16th in the Sunday races. Isaac Vinales (TPR by Vinales Racing Kawasaki) was 20th and then 17th. 
Oliver König (Orelac Racing Movisio Kawasaki) was unable to start the Superpole Race for technical reasons and he also missed out on Race Two.

2023 KRT Rider WorldSBK Statistics

Jonathan Rea: World Champion 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020
2023: Races 33, Wins 1, Podiums 17, Superpoles 3
Career Race Wins: 119 (104 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 262 (220 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 43 (39 for Kawasaki)

Alex Lowes:
2023: Races: 28, Wins 0, Podiums 1, Superpoles 0
Career Race Wins: 2 (1 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 34 (14 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 1 (0 for Kawasaki)

8 x Riders’ Championships (Scott Russell 1993, Tom Sykes 2013, Rea 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020), 1 x EVO Riders’ Championship (David Salom 2014)
6 x Manufacturers’ Championships (Ninja ZX-10R 2015 & 2016, Ninja ZX-10RR 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020)
5 x Teams’ Championships (KRT/Provec Racing 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 & 2019)

Kawasaki FIM Superbike World Championship Statistics
Total Kawasaki Race Wins: 178 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Podiums: 541 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Poles: 108 – second overall