Assen WorldSBK: Bautista survives early fight for double win

Picture: GeeBee Images

Runaway WorldSBK series leader Alvaro Bautista survived an early scrap with reigning champion Jonathan Rea to take the double win at Assen this afternoon.

Rea, who ran the hard rear Pirelli, came from row three to the lead in the space of five corners after the lights went out, and the snatched the lead from the Ducati man at Strubben

The Irishman then backed the pack up to try and mess with Bautista’a rhythm but the Spaniard returned the favour, made a pass stick and then cleared off for a five-second win.

Local hero Michael van der Mark also passed Rea with three laps to run which pushed the Kawasaki man back to third who was demonstrably struggling for rear grip.

Rea tried to fight back on the last lap and the pair made contact at Duikersloot but it was not to be and he lost out by 0.020s.

Chaz Davies (Aruba Ducati) briefly went up to second after Bautista took the lead but Rea went back to second on lap seven, just as Davies started to drop back.

VDM and his team-mate Alex Lowes contested the final podium slot for a time, as Davies dropped into the force field generated by Leon Haslam (Kawasaki Racing Team) and Markus Reiterberger (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team).

Lowes would finish fourth, Davies fifth, and Reiterberger sixth.

Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) was riding on his own and finally took seventh, from a dramatically slowing Haslam in an eventual eighth. A repeat of race one’s Jordi Torres (Team Pedercini Racing Kawasaki) v Toprak Razgatlioglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing) battle saw Toprak ninth and Torres tenth this time. Top Honda rider was Leon Camier (Moriwaki-Althea Honda Racing Team) in 12th, one place behind GRT Yamaha rider Sandro Cortese.

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