Well, no-one saw that coming. It was a given that Alvaro Bautista would give Jonathan Rea a run for his money in the 2019 WorldSBK series but his early domination, and subsequent collapse, couldn’t have been scripted.
Ducati’s V4R was unproven at the beginning of the season. This was its first year in competition and also Bautista’s first on a production bike with chewing gum tyres and uncapped electronics. But that didn’t stop him winning the first 11 races in a row.
It began to unravel at as wet Imola when Rea found his mojo and then the crashes began at Jerez. The turning point came at Laguna when crashes and injury meant the Spaniard no-scored while Rea marched onwards and eventually took a record fifth straight world title to become the GOAT.
The battle for third also raged hard with Alex Lowes eventually taking it from Yamaha team-mate Michael van der Mark by 14 points and Toprak Razgatlioglu in fifth.
Vote below for your WorldSBK Rider of the Year 2019. Voting closes December 20.