Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) stormed to his third win of the season with a quintessential Assen performance, nailing his eighth consecutive Dutch win and twelfth in total, equalling Carl Fogarty’s historic dozen Assen triumphs along the way. It didn’t come easy for the Northern Irishman, however, forced to fend off strong attacks from Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) and Chaz Davies ( Racing – Ducati), second and third respectively.

The grid hinted towards a fascinating start, with five teams holding the first five positions. Rea made the move over poleman Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) at the first corner, although it was Xavi Fores (Barni Racing Team) who took the early lead with a flying start at the lights. However, by the end of Sector 1 it was Rea back on top. Behind him, van der Mark began his climb right of the bat, jumping from seventh to fourth.

The crowd were ecstatic by the end of lap 8, as local boy van der Mark, astonishingly quick throughout the race, picked off Rea at the chicane and made his way into first. However, the championship leader took over two laps later, same spot, same move.

By then Chaz Davies had quietly made his way to the top, once again making up for a poor Superpole with a scintillating race. A three-way battle ensued, with Davies merely centimetres off of Rea but unable to just quite make it past. With van der Mark and Davies then battling for second behind, Rea put some space between him and his pursuers for the final laps, although never more than a second.

Behind the front three, Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) showed the Kawasaki’s pace here after a poor weekend at MotorLand Aragon, coming in fourth and a mere two tenths off a first podium finish since Phillip Park Race 1.

Xavi Fores, again the first independent rider, made it through the checkered flag in fifth, drifting off the front pace through the final laps. Marco Melandri ( Racing – Ducati) made it to the line in sixth, untroubled but also unable to stay close to the lead.

Loriz Baz (GULF Althea BMW Racing Team) followed in seventh place, with Leandro Mercado (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) in eighth, season-best finishes for both riders. Top ten was closed by Jordi Torres (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) in ninth and Toprak Razgatlioglu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) in tenth.

Lowes, scoring his maiden WorldSBK pole just two hours earlier, had a nightmare race, falling quickly down the field after the early laps and just scraping in in twelfth, 33 seconds off the lead. Ditto for Lorenzo Savadori (Milwaukee Aprilia), heading row 2 at the start but just making it to the line in fifteenth.


P1 – Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK)

“It was a really fun race, when Mikey came through I could see he had the pace where I didn’t and I tried to keep smooth out on track. There was a point in the race when I wasn’t sure how to manage the pace. But then with a couple of laps to go squeezed back into low 36.s and I took the win. But it was difficult, this morning we looked good on paper but the rest stepped up, so we need to work tomorrow, but thanks to the team for giving me a great bike.”


P2 – Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team)

“It was an amazing race, I had a good start and managed to stay calm in the beginning and made my way to the front. When I saw Jonny, he  was not pushing as hard as I thought he would, and then I got to the fight for the front. I tried to stay as close as I could, in the end I was able to catch Chaz, but wasn’t able to get Jonny, but I’m really happy with second place.”


P3 – Chaz Davies ( Racing – Ducati)

“It was a good battle all race long, Mikey was breathing down my neck all race long and he eventually got past me. I thought about having a go straight back at him but then I thought he might have a better pace than me, so I’ll let him chase Jonny but in the end. I’m really happy, yesterday was really tough, in qualifying we were better and in the race I think we did a really good job so pretty happy. We’ll take that and make some improvements for tomorrow.”


#DutchWorldSBK at TT Circuit Assen: Race 1
1. Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK)
2. Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) +0.981
3.  Chaz Davies ( Racing – Ducati) +1.282

Championship Standings after Race 1, Round 4
1. Jonthan Rea (GBR) Kawasaki (139 points)
2.  Chaz Davies (GBR) Ducati  (118 points)
3.Marco Melandri (ITA) Ducati (106 points)

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