Belfast Telegraph

Alvaro Bautista beats Jonathan Rea to continue winning start to season

Up close: Jonathan Rea tucked in behind Alvaro Bautista
Up close: Jonathan Rea tucked in behind Alvaro Bautista

Alvaro Bautista has beaten Jonathan Rea into second place for the fourth time in a row.

The Spaniard, 34, continued his winning start to the World Superbike season in Thailand.

The Ducati rider over took early leader Rea with 12 laps to go and pulled away to make it four wins out of four.

He has extended his series lead to 18 points.

Kawasaki rider Rea made Bautista work hard for his victory but the power advantage of the Ducati machine on long straights proved crucial and Bautista ran out the winner by just over 8 seconds.

Four-time world champion Rea told the BBC he was "riding on the edge" to try and challenge Bautista for the victory.

"You can't give away the amount of speed which we are. I was pushing way over the limit and the front tyre was screaming at me," explained the Northern Irishman.

"I enjoyed the race - I got stuck in and had fire in my belly.

"There is work to do but I'm happy. If you take Alvaro out of the equation I'm very strong."

Rea is aiming for a fifth straight title.

Belfast Telegraph Digital

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph