Misano WorldSBK: Razgatlioglu breaks duck with maiden 2022 victory| Christina Bulpett | WorldSBK
Pata Yamaha’s Toprak Razgatlioglu finally claimed the long awaited first WorldSBK win of 2022 at Misano in Sunday’s Superpole race.
An initially dramatic clash evened out as the ten lap race came to fruition with Alvaro Bautista and Jonathan Rea crossing the line two seconds adrift of both each other and the Turkish victor.
Sunday’s sprint welcomed the traditional Italian conditions expected at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli with morning temperatures already up to 27℃ ambient and 39℃ on track. Race one winner Bautista headed the grid on the Aruba.it Ducati with Razgatlioglu and KRT’s Rea alongside as another dramatic duel awaited. Christophe Ponsson withdrawn from the action due to a fractured collarbone following his Saturday crash on the Gil Motorsport Yamaha.
The two Hondas lined up on the Pirelli SCQ tyre as the lights released with Razgatlioglu taking the holeshot. Alex Lowes suffering at the start once again as his Kawasaki found eighth through the opening corner. Rea was in charge by the second sector with the front row reversed as Michael Rinaldi, Andrea Locatelli and Xavi Vierge held fourth to sixth.
Razgatlioglu struck back on lap two with the pair inseparable as they jostled for position. Bautista in touch but biding his time as the duo ahead continued to battle. Progress saw Team HRC up to fifth and sixth before the second Pata R1 of Locatelli dispatched Lecuona. Bautista doing likewise on Rea at Curvone out front before the Northern Irishman hit back at turn 15 and Vierge continued to improve, to fourth, as the next lap concluded
The reigning champion held a two-second advantage for the lead as the fourth lap fired up. The duo behind continuing to challenge each other repeatedly as Vierge consolidated his best of the rest position by a second over Rinaldi and Lecuona. The top five battle forming a five rider group as the lap unfolded. Locatelli sweeping through to claim fifth from seventh as Bonovo’s Loris Baz crashed out.
Vierge was gunning for the podium as the race hit half distance. Motocorsa’s Axel Bassani dispatching Lowes for seventh as Rinaldi dropped backwards to tenth. GRT Yamaha’s Garrett Gerloff capitalising on the fading Ducati for the last of the Superpole grid positions, in ninth.
Three to go and the leading trio were running solitary races, Vierge half a second adrift of the Kawasaki with his Honda teammate a near two seconds further back to round out the top five.
Razgatlioglu claimed his first race win of the 2022 season, just as he had last year at the Italian venue, by a commanding two seconds and a full wheelie across the line to the delights of the Pata Yamaha team. Bautista and Rea split by a similar distance to complete the podium from the Hondas of Vierge and Lecuona. Locatelli headed fellow Italian Bassani with Lowes completing the ten lap dash in eighth while Gerloff completed the all-important top nine positions to determine the opening three rows of the afternoon clash.
Rinaldi met the flag in tenth having initially challenged in the leading group with the BMWs of Scott Redding and Eugene Laverty behind.