The Superpole Race, held in dry and sunny conditions in the morning, provided an intense ten laps of action. Jonathan was a fighting third from his pole position starting spot, trying until the end to take second place from his championship rival Alvaro Bautista.
Alex was also in good form during the short race, getting up to fourth place after some early battles and scoring strong championship points for his efforts.
In Race Two Rea would be penalised with a long lap penalty when he attempted an overtake on the inside of championship leader Alvaro Bautista and they collided, with Bautista crashing out of contention.
Rea recomposed himself, completed a long lap penalty and immediately started his climb back through the top ten. Jonathan would end up fifth after all 21-laps had been completed, just one place behind Alex.
Lowes’ fourth place in Race Two was his third identical off-podium finish of the weekend, giving him a more than useful collection of points during what was the comeback round after a long break in competitive action.
In the Championship itself Rea is now third with 285 points and Lowes is seventh, with 145.
After the Magny Cours round the KRT squad’s home race weekend will take place at the Circuit de Barcelona - Catalunya between 23-25 September.
Jonathan Rea, stated: “I made a pretty bold set-up change before the Superpole race. I felt we needed to put a bit more weight on the front to help the bike turn more naturally and get more rear stability. I think it worked in the Superpole Race. There was a last lap battle and we finished third. In Race Two I made a pretty good getaway but found myself in third and then fourth. I knew I was strong at Turn 13 all weekend. I saw Toprak Razgatlioglu going away and I wanted to go down the inside of Alvaro Bautista. He came back to his line, I was there, and we touched. I was on my limit on the inside to make the manoeuvre, but I didn’t blow the corner by any means. I made my apex and unfortunately he went down. I am really sorry for that because it was really not my intention. I want to make that clear, there was zero bad intention. I have been to see Alvaro. I offered my apologies and tried to give my point of view. I listened to his point of view, so for me that is turn the page now. I had to take my long lap penalty and it was a lonely race then. Race Two was a fifth place and not a great weekend overall, so we will try to turn the page now and go to Barcelona.”
Alex Lowes, stated: “I was happier today than I was yesterday but I panicked a bit in the middle of the long race. In the Superpole race, I was happy enough. I was behind Scott Redding and I couldn’t really pass him, although I tried. Then when he made a little mistake I was able to put some good laps in. I was on a very similar pace to Johnny, which normally means you are riding quite well. In Race Two I started to slide a bit on the front, especially in the long third turn. I was expecting the tyre to drop but after a couple of laps it came back to me and felt good. I was able to push hard to the end of the race. I have had more confidence on the gas, to drive the bike off the corner, after the test in Barcelona recently. On fresh tyres, at the start of the second race, I felt like I was losing time and it was too easy for the other guys to pass me. But apart from that I was quite happy with the bike and the weekend’s work.”
Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) was 14th and then 12th at his home round on Sunday, scoring points in Race Two.
Oliver König (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) ran out 23rd and then 18th in France, with new WorldSBK rider Oscar Gutierrez (Team Pedercini Racing Kawasaki) 22nd and then 17th.
2022 KRT Rider WorldSBK Statistics
Jonathan Rea: World Champion 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020
2022: Races 21, Wins 5, Podiums 16, Superpoles 4
Career Race Wins: 117 (102 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 231 (189 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 39 (35 for Kawasaki)
2022: Races: 20, Wins 0, Podiums 1, Superpoles 0
Career Race Wins: 2 (1 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 30 (10 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: 506 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Poles: 104 – second overall