With the final race day of the Misano WorldSBK weekend proving to be hot and sunny from the start the Superpole Race got underway at 11.00 local time with the track temperature already around 40°C.
Jonathan was in the leading mix from the beginning of the ‘sprint’ race and would eventually finish third. Alex was eighth in the Superpole Race, which put him on the third row of the grid for the 21-lap finale.
In Race Two, the second long distance race of the weekend, the ambient temperature was 28°C and the track temperature was over 50°C.
In the beginning of the race Rea had to fight for track position and went from third to fourth on lap three. He could not get back into podium contention and ended up in fourth place.
Lowes had an even more dramatic Race Two, as he lost two places not one when dropping back to let a rider through after overtaking him under a yellow warning flag.
Unaware that he had later been given a track limits warning - for exceeding the edges of what is deemed to be the true racing surface - Alex was given a long lap penalty, which lost him his expected sixth place. In the end, he crossed the line in eighth place, still securing useful points.
In the overall championship standings Jonathan is still second with 184 points to Alvaro Bautista’s 220. Alex is seventh, with 75 points after finishing fifth, eighth and eighth at Misano.
After the completion of the Misano weekend there will be a long break in the WorldSBK action, with the season restarting at Donington Park in the UK between 15-17 July.
Jonathan Rea, stated: “I felt at the beginning of the Superpole Race I was OK but as soon as the pace stepped up I couldn’t really go with Toprak. He was on it and had a really good rhythm. Then with Alvaro as soon as he got clear track, he was gone. I felt that I was riding to get the maximum from the bike, but it wasn’t enough. I was getting frustrated because they were just going away. In the long race I was fourth in T1 but then I got track position behind Toprak and Alvaro. I just settled into a rhythm I thought was OK. I was really struggling with entering corners, with sliding that was causing the front to chatter. I just had a pace that wasn’t good enough and struggled with grip. I had 2-3-4 race finishes for the weekend and we go out of here in one piece, with some points. I think we maximised what we could do. When I raced with Alvaro out there I didn’t feel I had anything for him, to be honest. He was on a different level here. We will see what happens in Donington.”
Alex Lowes, stated: “What a shame that was. It was clearly tough conditions for us and our bike. I thought I had made a step but starting from the third row in the second race wasn’t going to be easy. I was in the battle for fifth but unfortunately I passed under a yellow flag, so when I raised my hand to let Lecuona go past, Lecuona and Bassani passed me, which put me further back again. I felt my pace was stronger than theirs but I just couldn’t get a rhythm. I couldn’t pass that was the biggest thing. I felt like I rode pretty well. A shame about the long lap but I didn’t get a warning on my dash display, just the long-lap penalty. If I had a warning I would have known not to go back on the green paint. The first long lap penalty for me in a race, so that was a new one, but it dropped us back and we finished eighth. Right now our bike is not loving the really hot sticky conditions, so we need to put our heads together and try to work on that. But I felt I did a good job. I will enjoy a pizza and a beer tonight with the family and come back in search of that first podium of the year first time out in Donington.”
Stand-in rider for the injured Lucas Mahias, Tito Rabat (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), was 16th in the Superpole Race, then 17th in Race Two.
Oliver König (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) was 20th in the Superpole race and 19th in Race Two. Alessandro Delbianco (Team Pedercini Racing Kawasaki) retired during the ten lap race and again in the last race.
2022 KRT Rider WorldSBK Statistics
Jonathan Rea: World Champion 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020
2022: Races 12, Wins 5, Podiums 10, Superpoles 1
Career Race Wins: 117 (102 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 225 (183 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 36 (32 for Kawasaki)
2022: Races: 12, Wins 0, Podiums 0, Superpoles 0
Career Race Wins: 2 (1 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 29 (9 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: 176 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Podiums: 499 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Poles: 101 – second overall