Belfast Telegraph

Rea chooses to embark on a new chapter with Kawasaki

By Paul Lindsay

After six seasons with the official Honda World Superbike team, Jonathan Rea will begin the 2015 season with a new challenge, racing alongside Tom Sykes in the Kawasaki World Superbike team. The Honda team is run from the Ten Kate Racing workshops in the Netherlands but Rea will leave that behind to begin a new chapter.

Year one of the partnership between Rea and the Ten Kate Honda team yielded six World Supersport podiums and three race wins.

When he stepped up to World Superbikes and the Honda Fireblade in 2009, Rea began a remarkable record that has seen him take at least one race victory every year.

His win tally stands at 15, with a total of 41 podium finishes. Rea currently sits 12th in the all-time World Superbike championship win list, with all those victories achieved with Honda.

Rea's entire road racing career to date has been on Honda machinery, beginning with the Red Bull Rookies programme and, in 2003, aged 16, competing in the British 125cc championship.

Rea's Honda career has also taken him to the Suzuka 8-Hours race in Japan, which, in 2012, he became the first British rider to win. Later that year, Rea also stood in for the injured Casey Stoner on the Repsol Honda RC213V at the Misano and Aragon MotoGP rounds.

It will be an emotional exit for the Manx-based Ulsterman, but here's hoping the 'green machines' offer up a more realistic opportunity for him to finally become world champion in 2015.

Belfast Telegraph

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