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The introduction of the Autodrom Most into the World Superbike Championship has proven to be positive for the series.
This year’s championship fight was once again turned upside down with three spectacular runs, which added up with Toprak Razgatlioglu coming within three points of Jonathan Rea, who in turn recorded his 200e and 201st podiums, and Scott Redding get engaged after asking the question on the podium.
Here is a summary of each race of the weekend.
The opening race turned out to be one of the biggest events of the year so far. Poleman Rea immediately lost his lead to Razgatlioglu, before losing both to Redding in the third round.
Redding moved away in the lead, leaving Razgatlioglu and Rea to fight for second place. The duo were starting to bring Redding back with just under half the race, but Rea lost the front and fell on the first corner.
Rea moved up to 11th place but remarkably crashed for the second time on the penultimate corner a few laps later. This time his race was over.
Razgatlioglu caught up with Redding with a few laps to go, with the duo changing places several times before the last lap. At the penultimate corner, Razgatlioglu came back a long way, later braked and made his way inside Redding – causing him to sit down in the process.
The Yamaha rider crossed the checkered flag to seal his fourth victory of the season, coming close to 12 points behind Rea in the standings. A frustrated Redding crossed the line in second and criticized the race winner’s decision.
Andrea Locatelli took his second WSB podium in third place, while Michael Ruben Rinaldi and Axel Bassani completed the top five. This is Bassani’s best result in the Superbike category. Garrett Gerloff finished sixth for GRT Yamaha, with HRC duo Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam seventh and eighth respectively.
Tom Sykes and wildcard entry Marvin Fritz rounded out the top 10. Fritz raced on a YART Yamaha bike, with the endurance team helping to collect data for the Japanese manufacturer. Chaz Davies and Michael van der Mark both crashed, as did Alex Lowes, but he was able to come back up and finish 13th.
Razgatlioglu led every lap of the Superpole sprint race to secure his second victory of the weekend. Rea kept him on his toes for the majority, but went straight into the first corner with two laps to go.
This put Rea in the clutches of Redding, who jumped out of the first corner on the final lap to take his second place runner-up of the weekend. Rea secured third place and at least got to celebrate his 200th WSB podium in the slowdown lap. Razgatlioglu, meanwhile, was only seven points behind.
Locatelli and Sykes complete the top five ahead of Gerloff and Lowes, while Bassani, Alvaro Bautista and Michael Ruben Rinaldi complete the top 10.
It was the third time Redding was lucky in the final race and he certainly celebrated in style. The 2019 BSB champion took the lead in the first corner in the fifth lap and was undisputed for the rest. Redding crossed the finish line with a lead of 3.587 seconds over Razgatlioglu.
While on the podium to celebrate his victory – his first since Estoril in May – Redding grabbed the mic and proposed to his girlfriend Jacey Hayden, who happily answered the big question.
Rea completed the podium, but his championship lead was reduced to just three points by Razgatlioglu. Redding is 50 points behind the reigning six-time champion.
Locatelli ended a brilliant weekend in fourth, extending its run into the first five to six races. The 2020 Supersport champion is definitely getting closer to a new Yamaha deal for 2022.
Rinaldi took over Lowes in the last lap to complete the top five, while Van der Mark, Gerloff, Sykes and Bautista completed the top 10. Bassani couldn’t match his previous performances, collapsing in the first turn.
The next round of the WSB will take place in another new addition to the calendar, Navarre, in northern Spain.