WSBK: Razgatlioglu Doubles Up in Magny-Cours Superpole Race

After the unexpected rain of Saturday, dry conditions on Sunday morning were welcomed by the teams as they looked to find some sort of setup for the remaining two races of the weekend at Magny-Cours, round eleven of the 2019 Superbike World Championship.

The Superpole race on Sunday morning once again saw Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) starting from the pole position he earned on Saturday morning, while race one winner Toprak Razgatlioglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing) had to start once more from his qualifying position of sixteenth.

It was a strong start from Rea but it was Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK) who made the holeshot to take the lead, one he held for the opening lap.

Michael van der Mark at Magny-Cours WSBK2019. Image courtesy of Yamaha Racing

Already by the end of the first lap there was a breakaway group of three, with van der Mark, Rea and Leon Haslam (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) breaking away from Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK) in fourth.

On lap two, on the entry to the Imola chicane, Rea took the lead from van der Mark, whilst Razgatlioglu had been making strong progress – fifth from sixteenth by the end of the second lap, and on lap three he passed Sykes for fourth and Haslam for third.

At the front, Rea wasn’t escaping from van der Mark, and Razgatlioglu was closing in third. Additionally, the ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati riders, Alvaro Bautista in eighth and Chaz Davies in fourth, were displaying strong pace.

Onto lap five and Razgatlioglu passed van der Mark for second, setting his sights on Rea as Davies closed in on the leading trio from behind.

By the end of lap six Rea and Razgatlioglu were distinctly a pairing at the front, detached from van der Mark in third whose attentions were being further taken by Davies.

Lap seven saw Rea lose the lead to Razgatlioglu, and he held it to the beginning of the final lap. Rea passed for the lead into the hairpin in turn five, but ran wide and Razgatlioglu was able to square him off. Rea was not close enough to make another attempt, meaning Razgatlioglu once again came from sixteenth to win – perhaps more impressively on this occasion considering he had only ten laps to do the job.

Second place for Rea saw a further extension of his championship advantage, which now stands at 103 points ahead of the final race of the weekend in which he will have an outside chance of wrapping up his fifth World Championship.

It was third place for Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK), a positive result for the Dutchman after the disappointment of race one. Of course, the results of the Superpole race determine the front three rows of the second full length race of the weekend, meaning all of the top three will start from the front row.

Chaz Davies was ultimately unable to get close enough to attack van der Mark for the podium and finished fourth ahead of teammate Alvaro Bautista who took fifth ahead of Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK), both Bautista and Lowes repeating their results of Saturday’s race.

Chaz Davis at Magny-Cours WSBK 2019. Image courtesy of Matteo Cavadini/Ducati

Seventh place went to Loris Baz (Ten Kate Racing – Yamaha), who was able to take advantage of Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK) and his struggles towards the end of the race to finish seventh while Sykes took eighth. Ninth place went to Leon Haslam who dropped off significantly after the opening laps where he was in the leading group – in the end the #91 was over ten seconds off the win. The top ten was rounded out by Michael Ruben Rinaldi (BARNI Racing) who was clearly much more comfortable in the fully dry conditions than in the half-half of Saturday.

Sandro Cortese took eleventh place ahead of GRT Yamaha WorldSBK teammate Marco Melandri in twelfth and Eugene Laverty (Team Goeleven) in thirteenth; while Leandro Mercado (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) was fourteenth and Jordi Torres (Team Pedercini Racing) took the final point in fifteenth.

Leon Camier (Moriwaki Althea Honda Team) was sixteenth, unable to repeat his impressive result of Saturday, ahead of Markus Reiterberger (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK) in seventeenth, Sylvain Barrier (Brixx Performance) in eighteenth, Alessandro Delbianco (Althea Mie Racing Team) in nineteenth and Ryuichi Kiyonari (Moriwaki Althea Honda Team) who was the final classified rider in twentieth, the Japanese remounting after a crash.

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